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Can my child have time off from school?

Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. If the leave is granted, they should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school. Examples of this would be:

  • Funeral of an immediate relative
  • Religious observation on days officially set apart by religious body to which the parents belong
  • Compassionate leave
  • Close family wedding
  • Medical appointments which cannot be arranged outside the school day
  • Music/ballet exam
  • Educational/interview visits to other schools

A form obtained from the school office must be completed when withdrawal from learning is being requested in exceptional circumstances.


Will I be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice if my child has unauthorised absences?

There is no legal entitlement to holidays during term time and this should be avoided. It will automatically be classed as unauthorised absence and after 5 days, a fixed penalty notices and fine may be issued.

Parents/carers should be aware that Horsham East Schools follow the WSCC guidelines on issuing FPN and unauthorised absence of 10 sessions or more (each half day counts as 1 session) could result in the issuing of a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) by the local authority. On DFE guidance, any unauthorised holiday of five consecutive days or more will lead to the issuing of an FPN (guidance leaflet available on request).