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reducing barriers to better lives

Absence during term-time as a result of term-time leave of absence interrupts continuity of teaching and learning and disrupts the educational progress of individual children. Bradford Children's Service aims to minimise the amount of time lost to term-time leave of abence through a policy which actively discourages parents from arranging family holidays, trip abroad etc during term time and supports schools to authorise absence for such leave only in exceptional circumstances.

Between September 2012 and July 2013 over 81,000 days of education were lost due to families taking holiday in term time, with or without the school's permission.

Families do not have a right to take their children out of school for the purposes of family holidays or trips abroad.


New government guidance instructs Headteachers NOT to authorise leave of abscence in term time. Permission for this type of absence should only be granted in the most exceptional circumstances. It is for Headteachers to determine what are 'exceptional circumstances' and apply these consistently and equitably.


Parents should not take their children out of school without first seeking the schools permission.

The following reasons will not be considered acceptable reasons for requesting leave of absence in term time:-

  • availability of cheap holidays
  • availability of desired accommodation
  • poor weather experienced in school holiday periods