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Taking kids out of school - just check the rules first

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
three years ago we were off for some race training with some of the clubs kids, and one head teacher had refused the request for one of the girls to go, one of the funniest things was listening to her dad ringing in to say she was ill as we were heading to the 'gate' with the tannoy blaring out the details of the flight! Toofy Grin
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
stefoy4me,

Yep of course they learn more skiing for a week than they do in school - what complete and utter rubbish!

Yep school ski trips are just Jollies for the teachers - complete and utter twaddle again (they are usually during the holiday time anyway.) They are very demanding for the teachers and not a holiday at all. As a teacher I ski about 4 weeks a year, and I would not now go on another school ski trip - they are really knackering. The teachers (who run them) give many pupils the chance to go skiing. Many schools will not run them anymore - mainly because of the risk of litigation and hassle from parents that act like idiots!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
It will be interesting to see what our school say then Toofy Grin our eldest 2 are both chalet hosting next season, 1 in France, 1 in Austria, obviously we have to visit them both, which means taking our youngest out of school twice for ski holidays! We are going half term term too which may mean an extra day, will I end up in prison Toofy Grin
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RobW wrote:
Next year it might be a little difference, as eldest will now be in a different school, and we may have to educate the head teacher.


Had a session at his new school tonight, and they were very supportive of taking him out for genuine sporting activities. Subject of course to keeping up with his school work, other attendance being exemplary and so on.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
RobW, If you've no objections, I think we are going to use that line. Laughing
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JayDub wrote:
stefoy4me,

Yep of course they learn more skiing for a week than they do in school - what complete and utter rubbish!



This year we took our 3 out in March, the week before we left they called a last minute inset day and while we were away an inch of snow shut the school for 2 days. So i would have to agree with " stefoy4me "
Even if they had been there all week the life experience I feel is far more valuable to them than a week a school doing stuff they can catch up on when they get back, or take with them when they go, like ours do.

For 2012/13 year if you add up all the inset, snow closure and strike days at our school. Our have been off nearly 2 weeks !!! If we both worked full time that would have been a massive problem.

Phil
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Thanks Qwertyuiop.........i wasn t going to bother replying to the thread after the torrent of insight from our ex teacher JayDub

agreed........at 5 & 7 as mine were when we took them out, the life experience of a new sport, different culture and language....i believe is more valuable. The won t have missed much and we checked with the school before hand for any reading or work they may miss.

In later years with exams etc........thats a different story
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
stefoy4me,

Sorry if you felt it was a torrent of abuse - not intended. I still do not agree with what you said.

I really believe pupils should be allowed to be out of school to take part in skiing and other activities. As long as they catch up with work.

Schools are closed (during snow) because of the risk of litigation/H+S issues - not because they do not want to be open. Inset days/Baker days were the idea of the Dfe and Lord Baker - not teachers. The current new regulations have been dreamt up by the Dfe and Michael Gove.
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Quote:

a free weeks jolly for the teachers

stefoy4me, you started it! Have you any experience at all of taking school kids on residential weeks? I don't blame somebody who has for wanting to set the record straight.
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I think the other issue is that of where is a line drawn? For example if 5 or 6 or 7 students are withdrawn from a teaching group it has a really big impact on lessons... and also what message does that send to parents who just want a cheap holiday outside of the school holiday dates... when does a beach holiday become sporting because there is swimming involved? when does a week cycling in france become valuable life experience?
As a teacher myself, i feel everyones frustration about pricing... but how would you feel if teachers started taking a week out of school for the same reason?
I value absolutely the benefit of getting out skiing but surely people can understand that it is more complicated than individual calls about individual students with individual parents... in the last couple of years we have seen a massive increase in parents requesting holiday within term time, and whether you believe it or not, it is really disruptive not necessarily just for the student out, but for the rest of the group and the teaching staff.
and no school trips are jollies... trust me they are probably the most intensely stressful periods of time i can think of and teachers run them because they believe in offering the experience to those who wouldnt normally get it, not just because they fancy a holiday.
Can we reserve the school/teacher bashing to things that they have control over... not dictats that are passed down by central govt./DfE
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earthtremor, not a teacher myself, but there is an awful lot of it going on here from time to time. It's normally a nice place to hang out, but there are subjects I see and cringe at, as I know war will break out. FWIW, I did take my kids out of school, but only primary, as locum cover for pharmacists during school holidays was nigh on impossible to get in the mid 90s (probably easier now though). Headmaster had no problem with it (him Mum was a pharmacist).
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
pam w wrote:
Quote:

a free weeks jolly for the teachers

stefoy4me, you started it! Have you any experience at all of taking school kids on residential weeks? I don't blame somebody who has for wanting to set the record straight.


Again I have to agree with "stefoy4me"

Last time (and only time) my son went on a school ski trip it certainly sounded like a jolly to me. There and back by coach so no stress at the airport, 6 days in the resort with all the kids in 3 hour ESF supervised lessons in the morning and again in the afternoon. Evening activities organised and run by the hotel they stayed in. All tired and in bed by 9:30
So getting paid your normal wage for 36 hours of free time on the slopes with no impact on your 14 week holiday entitlement sounds pretty jolly to me.
Plus I imagine they get the choice to go or not, so if they think its going to be too hard work, don't go.

On the other hand, the primary school that all 3 of my kids have gone to, have a year 6 French residential every year, WW One battlefields, chocolate factory, cheese farm, day out in Amiens etc. Fully supervised and organised by the teachers, bloody hard work i imagine but they all love and remember it for years as do the teachers, who all want to go but have to take it in turns to attend. But we are talking about skiing trips which as I have said in my experience are a free ski trip for the teachers

Phil


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Sat 29-06-13 15:40; edited 1 time in total
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qwertyuiop7,

Sounds like they had it well organised there - spot on. Could you post the name of the ski company please!

I hope it was not in half-term though.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
qwertyuiop7, OMFG are you for real? You would have to pay me a LOT of money to be on a coach full of schoolkids for any amount of time - never mind driving to France or wherever they went skiing.

I seriously doubt the kids were tired and in bed by 9.30pm. Ive never known any school trip where some of the kids didnt misbehave and mess about at bed time. You also get the oldest looking kid being sent off to try and buy fags and booze. The sense of responsibility must be immense - and its 24 hours a day for the whole week.

As for teachers not going "if they think it'll be hard work"; I suspect that teachers do many many things that are hard work - not because they have to, but because it is the profession they have chosen and they have taken on the responsibility for developing these kids.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
qwertyuiop7, A fairly obvious uninformed troll.

May I suggest that, as an experienced skier, you volunteer to go with the school next time, assuming your CRB status permits it of course. A 24 hour ride out with teenagers on a coach and a ferry (cheaper than the Tunnel so the ski companies use them), followed by 6 days where you may be able to free ski, but in reality you will be accompanying or monitoring the ski classes in case there are any problems. Yes the instructors are responsible on the slopes but you have to get them there on time with everything they need, including either a packed lunch or lunch vouchers/money. Supervise them through lunch of course then collect them at the end of the ski lessons and return them to the hotel or base. There you will have to ensure that if they are allowed to wander the resort that they are not in any danger, including making sure they do not buy any alcohol or any other contraband. Those at the hotel have to be organised so that they do not get up to mischief because they are bored. After supervising them through the evening meal, organising some kind of entertainment and then making sure that they retire to their own rooms when their curfew starts. Patrolling the corridors can of course can be done in shifts, you may have time to have a shower and get out of your ski clothes during your down time. However, the rest of the night you are on call, either shutting people up or cleaning up after the illegal alcohol consumed while you were not looking is returned with interest. Repeat each day for 6 days, then rush them all through an early supper on the last day, load the coach and begin your journey back to the UK. Having returned to the school you may or may not have to drive a child home because the parents have not made the pick up in time, or you have to wait because they have been delayed.

This is all assuming that everything goes to plan, heaven forbid that something go wrong and that you will have to undergo an investigation to see if you were in any way negligent. Or as happened to us once, our 24-hour return journey was delayed due to heavy snow and I and my staff stepped of the bus to return to their classrooms to teach while the students were given the day off to recover.

Funny how teachers do this just because it is a free jolly, aren't they lucky! Shame they are not appreciated by such cynical and knowledgeable parents such as yourself. But of course you know so much better than these poor deluded souls because you are so superior rolling eyes Not!
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

it certainly sounded like a jolly to me. There and back by coach so no stress at the airport

rolling eyes where's the hysterical laughter smiley. Last time my son in law did one of those trips (he refuses to do any more as he has children, and his half term week is too precious to work - he got no time off in lieu) the weather was bad and it took them over 30 hours to get to their Italian resort. The children were fed up and tired and some of them were sick. Some people are just so clueless you have to laugh. I wonder if qwertyuiop7 has even taken his own kids on a 30 hour coach trip, let alone an entire bus full. Most people on Snowheads, if you suggest going even to the French Alps by coach, react as though you'd suggested they stick pins in their eyes. Laughing
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Shimmy Alcott, Samerberg Sue, pam w, +1. Spot on!
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Samerberg Sue wrote:
qwertyuiop7, A fairly obvious uninformed troll.


No not at all. Last time i check this forum was available for any registered user to make comments on anything ski related. If i have touched a raw nerve or upset anyone then that was not my intention, and i suggest you don't follow the thread any more.

Samerberg Sue wrote:
qwertyuiop7

Funny how teachers do this just because it is a free jolly, aren't they lucky! Shame they are not appreciated by such cynical and knowledgeable parents such as yourself. But of course you know so much better than these poor deluded souls because you are so superior rolling eyes Not!


Who mentioned anything about being superior ?????
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qwertyuiop7, youve not touched a raw nerve with me at all; I simply can not believe that you think taking a coach load of kids away for a week is easy in any way at all.
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
qwertyuiop7, Ski related yes, even the most uninformed can ask questions and receive extremely knowledgeable and experienced based answers.

You on the other hand made a gross statement of the "facts" - as you were on none of the trips, one can hardly call you informed or experienced in this particular matter. You are relying on hardly impartial third-party hersay. You also made a value loaded criticism of the teachers who took your son skiing based only on his observations and extrapolated them to basically include all teachers running trips.
I on the other hand have organised more school trips than you and can base my observations on what actually goes on any trip that some students are not aware of. But of course you are entitled to your uninformed biased and basically ignorant opinion of the teachers who bothered to take your lad skiing. Like I said, put your money where your mouth is an go on one of these jollies as a non-paying leader/freeloader and then come back here and explain how the students are being ripped-off by their teachers.

Perhaps it should be you who stops "contributing" until you have more knowledge.
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Samerberg Sue wrote:
qwertyuiop7, Ski related yes, even the most uninformed can ask questions and receive extremely knowledgeable and experienced based answers.

You on the other hand made a gross statement of the "facts" - as you were on none of the trips, one can hardly call you informed or experienced in this particular matter. You are relying on hardly impartial third-party hersay. You also made a value loaded criticism of the teachers who took your son skiing based only on his observations and extrapolated them to basically include all teachers running trips.
I on the other hand have organised more school trips than you and can base my observations on what actually goes on any trip that some students are not aware of. But of course you are entitled to your uninformed biased and basically ignorant opinion of the teachers who bothered to take your lad skiing. Like I said, put your money where your mouth is an go on one of these jollies as a non-paying leader/freeloader and then come back here and explain how the students are being ripped-off by their teachers.

Perhaps it should be you who stops "contributing" until you have more knowledge.


Facts

No one but you mentioned free loading
No one but you mentioned being ripped-off by the teachers
My sons observations were based on fact and not 3rd party hersay (actually spelt - hearsay)
No one bothered to take them skiing, they were all paid for their time and they went away in term term time.
I have obviously hit a raw nerve, and I as have run out of big words to use and cannot compete with the eloquence of your last post, I will take your learned advice and contribute no more.

In the mean time I will concentrate all my free time on the Crewe & Nantwich under 11's rugby squad of which I am a the non paying/freeloading volunteer head coach.

One last thing if the trips you orgainse and go on, as your previous post infers are really that much of a hardship for you, might i suggest you don't go again ?? its not compulsory.

Phil


Last edited by You'll need to Register first of course. on Sat 29-06-13 22:18; edited 1 time in total
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Quote:

No one but you mentioned free loading

you need to read the thread again more carefully, qwertyuiop7.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
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Quote:

In the mean time I will concentrate all my free time on the Crewe & Nantwich under 12's rugby squad of which I am a the non paying/freeloading volunteer head coach.


Quote:

Phil


Would just like to point out that he is not my Phil!
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Quote:

My sons observations were based on fact and not 3rd party hersay (actually spelt - hearsay)
No one bothered to take them skiing, they were all paid for their time and they went away in term term time.

Firstly, kids never see the bigger picture. My kids dont see how much work goes into keeping them fed, clothed, in the right place at the right time etc etc. They are kids and they are mostly thinking about themselves.

Secondly, do you think there are many qualified ski instructors who are also secondary school teachers? Your kid went skiing with qualified instructors, I'd say that was pretty much a given requirement. ESF instructors are used to giving group lessons and I doubt very much they would want a teacher tagging along muddying the lines of authority.

Your kid was in lessons for six hours a day, add on to that 8 hours sleep then there is 10 hours a day unaccounted for. Who do you think was guiding and organising the kids during this time? Do you honestly thin that the teachers were not bothered by kids between 9.30pm and morning? You dont think any of those kids were ill/naughty/homesick after 9.30pm each night?
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Strange, coach for U12 Crewe and Nantwich is not a Phil. Have a friend who is very much involved in the team and have confirmation of the real name. Why make stuff up? rolling eyes
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Quote:

I doubt very much they would want a teacher tagging along muddying the lines of authority.

I think it's OK if the teachers keep quiet and do what they are told. My son in law was a complete beginner on his first school trip and went in ski school with some of the kids (a judicious sorting of the classes meant he was with the ones most likely to need a quiet word to keep them in line). He loved learning with them - said they had a good laugh.

His last trip, as a good skier, he skied with the "top group" of kids. He said the instructor (Italian) was very good but he was the only one who paid much attention and learnt anything. His own view is that the kids who get most out of school trips are those who have never been skiing - the ones who think they know it all already are a liability, resent having to have lessons and just want to go off hooning around on their own, unsupervised and take any opportunity to slip the net.

When I was in school in the early 'sixties a girl in my cousin's form at Cardiff High famously got pregnant (with twins....) on an URDD camp (Welsh youth outfit). She was the class swot too - a nice girl, actually. The couple got married, after the twins were born, and according to my cousin had a long and happy marriage.

Still, I expect there was a bit of muttering about lack of supervision at the time. wink
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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Shimmy Alcott wrote:
Strange, coach for U12 Crewe and Nantwich is not a Phil. Have a friend who is very much involved in the team and have confirmation of the real name. Why make stuff up? rolling eyes


Typo should have read U11's (well 11's for the 2013/14) season, with Mark and Jake. You can contact your "friend" again for confirmation if you like.

Wouldn't normally bother relpying but I really don't like being accused of lying.

You can call over and have a chat at our first training session if you like, and maybe give a hand we are always looking for new volunteers.
Oh and im just glad you took the time to contact your friend to try check out the story of a random "post" on the internet, if not i would never have realised my typing error, All corrected now thanks

Phil


PS
The name you were given by your friend was either Harvey, Ian or Darren. Or if he is still refering to last seasons 12's it will be either Nick(of Dabber Sports fame) or James


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Sat 29-06-13 23:00; edited 2 times in total
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qwertyuiop7, coming season - Ian is coach for the U12.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
So could someone summarise - can I take them out for 1-day before Xmas hols or not?
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Boris, Laughing
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Boris, it sounds like despite what some schools are saying it may still be down to the local it interpretation of your school and the worse that can happen is that you are fined and it will be recorded as unauthorised absence but that is not a guaranteed response.

Oh it also sounds like it is beneficial to record the reason as to attend "winter sport training".
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Quote:

the worse that can happen is that you are fined

my reading (see my link above) of the rules is that you can definitely NOT be fined for one day's unauthorised absence. And even after a week there are a number of hoops which would need to be jumped through (by the LEA) before that would happen.

It really comes down to whether you want to fall out with your kids' schools or not. Better avoided, if you can.
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
pam w, thanks Pam. I will send that on to my sister who was told at the first meeting she has ever had with her school which my neice (4yrs old) will be starting at in September, that it was an automatic fine.
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NickyJ, At 4yrs old they are not even legally required to be in school!
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
NickyJ, talk of "automatic fines" is surely just scare tactics. This, for example, is the Hampshire Code of Conduct for issuing penalty notices and it seems quite clear that there would be no question of issuing a penalty notice for a day's absence.

http://www.hants.gov.uk/decisions/decisions-docs/061215-excmse-R1208134539.html

and if you get a penalty notice and don't pay, then you can only be prosecuted for the original offence, not the non-payment. And no LEA is going to prosecute a parent for a day's unauthorised absence.

Middle class angst, as I said somewhere above, nicely stirred up, as ever, by the Daily sodding Mail. However, that doesn't mean that it isn't a top idea to co-operate as fully as possible with the child's school. Clearly, it is. However, the reason for doing so has nothing to do with being fined or going to prison.

If I were your sister I think I would ask the Head Teacher for a copy of the relevant "Code of Conduct" - it appears that the legislation requires education authorities to have one, and to act within its terms.
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RobW wrote:
NickyJ, At 4yrs old they are not even legally required to be in school!


Yep I told her that BUT given my neice turns 5 in October, it doesn't help with the ski trip she was hoping to take her (who will be) 5 & 2yr olds.

Pam, she isn't in Hampshire but it definitely gives us things to look up! It was my sister relaying the meeting, that gave me a heads up to the changes, just ahead of this thread starting.
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My suggestion is: take them out of school. I predict the way things are going it is going to become significantly more of a problem in the next several years. I have friends in the US and taking kids out of school is an absolute and complete no-no. So make hay while you just about still can
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
PS. It probably is wrong etc etc

But I would rather spend 3 months marooned at sea than be one of supervising teachers on a kid school trip. Those guys must simply have special temperaments. Anyone who is belittling what they do can't have a clue
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I can only assume Phil gave a hand a couple of the days when the real coaches asked bystanding parents for help. I got involved with training kids at local athletic club and ended up running in the opposite direction faster than I ever ran any race as a kid. If he knew what was really like to even have a weekly one hour commitment to kids he might revise some of his comments above
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Very handy having a doctor in the family who can provide a plausible medical certificate. It used to amuse my father to dream up different words/expressions for the common cold to put on said certificates. wink Luckily, too, my headmistress thought he was wonderful and could do no wrong. And indeed I wouldn't have been taken out of school had I been missing out on something and/or struggling to keep up.
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