Family Holidays and Special Leave in Term Time

Arts and Media School Islington’s policy on leave during term time.

The law requires parents to ensure their child’s regular attendance at school and normally we would not expect you to take your child out of school for a holiday or other family commitments. There is no automatic right to leave in term time.

When considering the timing of your family holiday, please remember the following:

  • A two week term time holiday will mean that your child misses 50 school lessons.
  • Research shows that children often do not catch up from work missed – this could have serious consequences for their learning and progress.
  • Your child’s term time leave could affect other pupils – the time teachers have to help all the children in a class is reduced if they spend time helping your child catch up after a holiday.
  • There are 175 non-school days in each year for holidays, cultural experiences and family time.

The local education authority and the national government strongly discourage schools from allowing term time leave. While you can be assured that each request will be considered on its individual merits, our practice is to only authorise leave on exceptional circumstances.

If we do agree to leave in term time, it is very important that your child comes back to school on the date agreed. Failure to return could result in your child being deleted from the school roll or legal action being taken against you for the absence. Our school has a duty to keep children safe and this includes knowing where they are.

If you withdraw your child for leave during term time when we have not agreed to it, this absence will be unauthorised and could result in a penalty notice (a £60-£120 fine) or a summons to court.

Holiday request in term time 

Term time leave will not be automatically authorised. If you believe your child must be absent from school due to exceptional circumstances/reasons then please put this in writing to the Head Teacher for her consideration. Please note that if your child is absent from school without the Head Teacher’s permission you may be issued with a Penalty Notice.


When a child has fallen ill during the school day, parents/carers will be notified to collect their child to escort them home, should parent/carers not be contactable the child will remain in school. 

Medical and Dental appointments   

Parents/carers should make all GP and Dental appointments outside of school time. Only Orthodontic and Hospital appointments will be upheld during the school day, your child will need to show a medical appointment card to the reception. 

Parents/carers are expected to collect their child prior to any appointment otherwise they will not be authorised to leave the school premises. 

At AMSI we endeavour to ensure that we are taking all the necessary measures to guarantee the safety of our young people and that our pupils receive the most from their education.

Thank you for your support in this matter.