WADE'S WORLD: Would you take your kids out of school to go on holiday?

South Wales Argus: FAMILY HOLIDAY: Is it right to take children out of school for holidays? FAMILY HOLIDAY: Is it right to take children out of school for holidays?

AS a parent who likes to go on holiday, I, have some sympathy for Paul Cookson.

His Facebook rant about prices hikes for holidays out of term time quickly went viral.

He complained of being quoted £999 for a holiday which would have cost £699 during the school year, saying he was 'sick to death' of the practice.

Soon, more than 166,000 people had backed an online petition inspired by his outburst to stop travel companies raising their prices during school holidays. This then triggered a debate in parliament.

As we see prices inflated during school holidays it means the temptation is always there to book a holiday in term-time, but to do this risks being fined by schools and interfering with your child's education.

Interestingly, many teachers are quite relaxed about this.

A recent survey for OnePoll found 66 per cent of teachers did not think taking primary school children out of the classroom for a family holiday would damage their schooling.

In the same survey 71 per cent of teachers disagreed with parents having to pay £60 per child for an unauthorised absence.

I tend to avoid it if possible, but when we wanted to go to Japan in October, it meant we couldn’t help taking our daughter out of school for a week and a half.

Her teacher was very positive. Both her and her headmistress agreed the experience would be educational and as long as we made sure she did some reading and maths during the holiday, they would be happy.

We shouldn’t always take our holidays in term-time, but surely there can be flexibility and a bit of common sense like this?

Another more radical solution is to do away with the long summer holiday altogether.

This has been suggested for all sorts of other reasons, like kids forgetting half of what they have learned when they go back to school and childcare being a nightmare - but would this fix the holiday price swizz?

Have you taken your children out of school for a holiday?

Do you think schools should be more flexible or are the real culprits the travel firms?

Let us know by leaving a comment here.

Comments (3)

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12:52pm Tue 8 Apr 14

Katie Re-Registered says...

It's blatant profiteering and thoroughly mercenary, but you can't win if you're a single, childless person either. Charging an extortionately extra amount, calling it a 'single supplement' and then simply bunging the lone holidaymaker into a converted broom cupboard when one arrives at the hotel has been a common practice amongst holiday firms and hoteliers for decades now.
It's blatant profiteering and thoroughly mercenary, but you can't win if you're a single, childless person either. Charging an extortionately extra amount, calling it a 'single supplement' and then simply bunging the lone holidaymaker into a converted broom cupboard when one arrives at the hotel has been a common practice amongst holiday firms and hoteliers for decades now. Katie Re-Registered
  • Score: 7

1:35pm Tue 8 Apr 14

-trigg- says...

One option that could be considered is to reduce the school summer holiday by 2 weeks and allow parents to take their children out of school for those 2 weeks at a time that suits them.

Another would be for term dates to be set by individual schools or even local education authorities, which would naturally serve to stagger school holiday times and spread the peak season, thereby reducing demand for those few weeks. As any economy student will tell you if demand reduces and supply remains constant, the price will fall.
One option that could be considered is to reduce the school summer holiday by 2 weeks and allow parents to take their children out of school for those 2 weeks at a time that suits them. Another would be for term dates to be set by individual schools or even local education authorities, which would naturally serve to stagger school holiday times and spread the peak season, thereby reducing demand for those few weeks. As any economy student will tell you if demand reduces and supply remains constant, the price will fall. -trigg-
  • Score: 4

1:23pm Wed 9 Apr 14

philjay72 says...

We have just been throughs this again ! Could not afford to take family to US around my Wife's 40th this month as it was around £1000 dearer in the holidays ! Also no one mentions fact many parents esp. In public service have to work during certain % public holidays so they CANT go then. I planned trip around Halloween instead only few days off school ! English relatives say they pay the fines as still cheaper! Fine the recurrent truants more! Hard working families and kids treated like wrong doers AGAIN - you only get certain time in life to be with kids - is this the same for families who take kids away for religious reasons?
We have just been throughs this again ! Could not afford to take family to US around my Wife's 40th this month as it was around £1000 dearer in the holidays ! Also no one mentions fact many parents esp. In public service have to work during certain % public holidays so they CANT go then. I planned trip around Halloween instead only few days off school ! English relatives say they pay the fines as still cheaper! Fine the recurrent truants more! Hard working families and kids treated like wrong doers AGAIN - you only get certain time in life to be with kids - is this the same for families who take kids away for religious reasons? philjay72
  • Score: 2

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