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Thursday February 2, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

5 Justices met this week to consider the issue. They are now considering their judgment which will be published later. NEW

The 5 Supreme Court Justices, Lord Neuberger, Lady Hale, Lord Mance, Lord Reed and Lord Hughes, heard evidence about whether parents should be able to take their child or children out of school during term-time.

The court president, Lord Neuberger, said it would give its judgment 'in due course' and it is expected in the Spring.

It will have a significant impact on term-time family ski holidays.

It followed a High Court victory by Jon Platt, who lives on the Isle of Wight, who refused to pay a £120 fine for taking his daughter out of school.

See here for our earlier report on the case and preview of the hearing this week.

Following the Supreme Court hearing on Tuesday Jon Platt has expressed reservations about winning.

He said he feared he had lost the case after the local authority argued that a child's unauthorised absence from school for even a single day or even a half a day can amount to a criminal offence.

The Isle of Wight Council, backed by the Education Secretary, brought the case to the Supreme Court where the council's barrister Martin Chamberlain yesterday argued that pupils had to be in school "at all times when required and in accordance with the rules".

He said: "Absence for even a single day, or even half a day, would constitute an offence."

After the hearing, Platt posted on Facebook: "Gut instinct.... I think we may have lost if I'm honest!! The Justices asked a very pertinent question, 'why were we suggesting that the requirement of 100% attendance is ABSURD... what's wrong with requiring children to attend every day that the school requires it'. To me that seems ominous."

Jon PlattJon Platt












The eventual ruling will clarify an extremely confusing picture.

35 councils in England have changed their policy on fining parents for term-time holidays since the High Court ruling.

The BBC has gathered information from 108 councils and found 35 have changed their policy as a direct result of Jon Platt's case.

See here for the full article on the BBC.

A further five are currently reviewing their guidelines and 28 have withdrawn fines issued to parents.

Of the councils that provided information, 22 told the BBC the number of parents taking term-time holidays has increased.

In North Somerset 100 fines have been put on hold while the council considers its policy.

There is a remarkable variation in the number of fixed penalty notices issued to parents.

So while Suffolk issued 6,008 fines in the 2015-16 school year there were just 108 on North Tyneside for example.

Richmond upon Thames issued none in the same period.

Here at PlanetSKI we will let you know the outcome when the Supreme Court published its judgement.

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the world of snowsports.

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MOUNTAIN KIDS (Thursday March 22, 2018)
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Term-time holiday victory (Monday June 26, 2017)

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