This evening I read on the BBC news that there is a campaign to scrap the ban that’s currently in place for term time holidays.
Many parents who have children in schools often complain about the soaring prices in holidays during the summer holidays. There has been a battle against attendance and fines for parents who take their child away from their education for the sake of a holiday.
I personally think this is ludicrous. I have many reasons as to why I think the ban should stay in place.
One of the most annoying thing about this argument is the attitude of many that a holiday is a right and is a necessity in life. A holiday is a treat, a real luxury which is now taken for granted by many. With a few clicks on the computer and with frequent public transport services we are able to hop aboard a plane and travel to almost any country we feel like. A break is always needed and an escape from your everyday routine can always be refreshing, however is there really a need for a family to book a holiday abroad during the summer holidays? What is wrong with a weekend break? A half term break is a little more expensive than usual but from experience I have learnt to budget for these price increases. As have many others. This leads onto my second point…
Parents aren’t the only ones who suffer this price jump during the holidays to grab an escape. All staff working in the education sector are unable to take term time holidays, how would they feel if they were told their son/daughter’s teacher won’t be in school for a week or two due to a holiday?
Some parents claim that a holiday is a learning experience and that their children will learn more on a weeks holiday than they would a week in school. This is offensive to many teachers who give most of their free time to their career and try to better these parent’s children. A holiday is a different experience and it can be a very good learning experience too. If you are willing to put the time and effort into it. Learning something is very different to experiencing it. If a parent thinks this way then I believe they should home school their child and travel around the world with them. If you know how your child learns best and know that they aren’t getting the best education – remove them. Simple!
I always say we live in a world where we are fortunate and lucky enough to have access to this amazing free education. There might be many political issues and lack of funding or support for staff, however there are many countries who do not have access to the very basics of education like reading and writing skills. Parent’s need to take a step back and see what they are actually getting for free. Some might even call our education free childcare, sometimes I agree, but again, this is something that many countries do not have.
Another point I would like to make is it isn’t just up to teachers to teach children. Parents owe it to their children to prepare them for the world in the best possible ways they can. Teacher’s need to be supported in what they do by the parents, not criticised and challenged. By removing children from the school environment for holidays whenever parent’s fancy, this stops an important cycle in teaching of observation, assessment and planning. Learning is never-ending. By removing a child from a learning environment parents are creating a block to their learning! The many learning experiences the children will miss out on in school will eventually show and it will of course be up to the teachers alone to ensure that the progress is caught up on and those children removed from school won’t be behind their peers.
There are so many arguments against this campaign and so many for it too. I understand that parents want to go on holiday with their children and make memories, but I think if parents are willing to use the free education system and want their children to do well at school, they need to play their part and keep them in the school.
By taking a child away from their daily routine for a holiday, you are slowly showing them that it is okay to not turn up to school with permission, it doesn’t matter if you miss out on a few maths lessons, you are embedding an argument of ‘I learn more out of school anyway’ for when they grow older.
Children need to be shown that holidays are luxuries and they cost a lot of money, which requires a lot of hard work! Also a there needs to be a gentle reminder to those who are campaigning, that there are a lot of families who cannot afford to feed their children in the UK, let alone a holiday during term time instead of summer holiday time. This campaign is a danger to making other parents feel like they are failing their children, or it could make them feel worse about their financial struggles.
There needs to be more unity between schools, parents and everyone in general in the world at the moment!