Arcticterntalk.org

The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Should children sometimes be allowed out of school during term time? The Jon Platt case continues 


The case of Jon Platt who was fined £120 due to taking his daughter out of school and then appealed the fine and magistrates ruled in his favour is well known. The Isle of Wight council then appealed to the high court and lost. They are now taking the case to the Supreme Court, the highest court in the land. 

Most parents are reasonable people and only take their children out of school when it is really essential or beneficial to the child. A holiday when otherwise they might not have had one is an important family matter. But there is another often not discussed aspect to this case. When schools make it impossible for children to attend when they could and should. Often with ramifications relating to childcare that neither benefit child nor family. Ad hoc childcare is rarely possible and cheap. 

This is a ridiculous case of course and the end result of this intransigence on the part of education authorities undoubtedly leads to creative reasons for children missing school. 

However on the other side of the fence schools choose their inset days with no reference nor regard to the families. What exactly is the reason that these must take place intern time? Why not holiday time? What actually happens on an inset day? Who audits the need , quantity and outcomes of having them? Teachers strike it seems too regularly. Schools close to accommodate numerous other activities . Entrance tests etc. So there are plenty of days when in fact children cannot go to school when they want to. 

Surely reason must emerge as the victor here. For most children a few days a year off school for reasonable reasons is fair. Parents are best placed to make this kind of decision. 

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One thought on “Should children sometimes be allowed out of school during term time? The Jon Platt case continues 

  1. Alexandra Pawley-Kean on said:

    Fair points well made.

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