The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006
Amendments have been made to the 2006 regulations in the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013. These amendments, as described below, will come into force on 1 September 2013.
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006 currently allow headteachers to grant leave of absence for the purpose of a family holiday during term time in “special circumstances” of up to ten school days leave per year. Headteachers can also grant extended leave for more than ten school days in exceptional circumstances.
Amendments to the 2006 regulations remove references to family holiday and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days. The amendments make clear that headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Headteachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.
Each application is considered individually by the school.
The following are examples of the criteria for leave of absence, which may be considered as ‘exceptional’:
- Service personnel returning from active deployment
- Where inflexibility of the parents’ leave or working arrangement is part of the organisational or company policy. This would need to be evidenced by the production or confirmation from the organisation/company
- Where leave is recommended as part of a parents’ or child’s rehabilitation from medical or emotional problems. Evidence must be provided
- When a family needs to spend time together to support each other during or after a crisis
Please note: Head teachers would not be expected to class any term time holiday as exceptional.
This is not an exhaustive list and Head teachers must consider the individual circumstances of each case when making a decision on this matter. Where a Head teacher feels that there may be exceptional circumstances which do not fit the criteria, they may refer to the local authority for advice. The decision of the Head teacher is final.
Parents who take a child on leave in term time without the permission of the school risk being issued with a penalty notice fine for unauthorised absences.