Search

Poll: Council’s crackdown on pupil absence in Redbridge

07:00 19 June 2014

Redbridge Town Hall in High Road, Ilford.

Redbridge Town Hall in High Road, Ilford.

Archant

Parents should not be punished for taking their children out of school during term time to learn about their cultural heritage, according to a union chief.

Kash Mallick, Redbridge divisional secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said the educational benefits of children visiting their families’ homelands, such as India and Pakistan, was as important as lessons in the classroom.

But he said parents cashing in on cheaper holidays should not be treated with similar leniency.

His claims come as new figures reveal fines for unauthorised absences have quadrupled in eight years.

A Freedom of Information Act request submitted by the Recorder found that 1,948 parents have received a School Attendance Penalty Notice during the current academic year.

In 2007 the number of fines dished out by Redbridge Council was just 495.

Parents taking their children out of school face a £60 fine each, per child. If it is not paid within 21 days fines increase to £120.

Mr Mallick said: “Children who go to their own country for two to three weeks is something they cannot do with the school – that type of education is as important and is something they would benefit from. It is wrong for the government to prevent that.”

He added: “People who are indigenous to this country do not have an understanding of how rich and how important the education and learning that goes on when children go abroad to their own country is.”

But Cllr Elaine Norman, Redbridge Council cabinet member for children, said: “I think the fining system has been effective. It’s important that children do not miss school. If they are taking long holidays in term time they miss key stages of the curriculum.”

Latest Ilford News Stories

Yesterday, 17:00
Police at the scene of August's shooting in Loxford Lane.

Residents have expressed concern over a lack of charges brought regarding a daylight shooting close to a park were children were playing.

Yesterday, 16:26
Kevin Wright's award winning picture titled 'Old Hall Salt Marshes. It was the overall winner at the Wanstead and Woodford Photographic Society's AGM.

A beautiful yet moody seascape shot at salt marshes in Essex has won a photography club’s annual competition.

Yesterday, 15:33
Yannis Madu who has won a Jack Petchey award for his work

“I’m academic, he isn’t. It’s easy for him to get overshadowed and not get the recognition he deserves,” said Vanessa Madu, 16, who has nominated younger brother Yannis for a Recorder/Redbridge Rotary Club Young Citizen Award.

Yesterday, 14:46
The Cabinet Member for Housing, Councillor Michelle Dunn  presenting certificates to Welcome 
Centre single homeless clients in celebration of the progress made by the clients over the last year on the Projects Life Skills and Employment Training Programme.

A homeless centre is holding an open day tomorrow to highlight the important work which goes on inside.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

VW Golf Estate

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now