I’ve been looking to book a getaway for Master A and I over the six-week holidays. I’m not after anything too flashy, simply a sojourn to new shores.
I knew it would be pricier than going out of term time but I didn’t realise it would be second-mortgage territory.
One seven-day holiday came in £1,800 more than it would cost a week outside the school summer holiday.
Despite needing an escape from the Hamster Wheel, I cannot bring myself to pay that much over the normal cost for the same holiday. Plus, I wouldn’t rest comfortably on my sun lounger knowing that I’d been “ripped off” for almost £2,000.
How do families with more than one child ever manage it? The answer – many of them don’t, which is why increasing numbers of hard-working parents decide to pay the financial penalties attached to taking their children on holiday in term time – its cheaper.
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One primary school headteacher in Kent is cracking down. Headteacher Angela Konarzewski, with the backing of the governors of Fleetdown Primary School in Dartford, has sent a letter to parents threatening to offer a child’s place at the school to someone on the waiting list if a child is taken on holiday during the school term.
The letter said: “We have decided that drastic measures need to be taken to halt the decline in attendance…
“It is not a human right to have a holiday – I think their education is more important than having a holiday with the family.”
I disagree. Being a parent is a tough and demanding job. Having a holiday is that ray in what seems an otherwise exceedingly long, dark tunnel of military precision school runs, routines and carefully choreographed plate spinning.
It’s an opportunity to spend quality time with your children, to get to breathe with them and to enjoy them. As for the education side of the argument, what better way for a child to learn about and appreciate the world around them than by experiencing new cultures and exploring new vistas?
Working Mum, just taking another look at that holiday...