What Qualifies as ‘Exceptional Circumstances?’

Kids on holiday
Kids on holiday

Following the recent news that teachers are facing confusion over when to allow term-time holidays, research commissioned by Holiday Extras has revealed the situations that the people of South Yorkshire would deem to be ‘exceptional circumstances.’

Unsurprisingly, family health matters were the priority for most, with bereavement of a family member (31%) and visiting a family member who is very ill (15%) chosen as the top two reasons for children to being taken out of school. Taking time to recover from a crisis (12%), parents not being able to take a holiday at any other times (8%) and the return of a family member from the military (6%) made up the rest of the top five most supported reasons.

Interestingly, an overwhelming 97% of people did not consider getting a good deal on a holiday as a good enough reason to take children out of school. Other interesting results showed that while only 4% of locals saw religious dates as a reason to miss school, 18-24 year old’s were more than twice as likely (10%) as other demographics to accept religious festivals as an ‘exceptional circumstance’.

Furthermore, one in seven (14%) South Yorkshire residents suggested that it should not be up to head teachers at all to decide what qualifies as an ‘exceptional circumstance.’

Anthony Clarke-Cowell, Communications Director at Holiday Extras, said: “The subject of term-time holidays continues to evoke a lot of debate but there’s also a lot of confusion surrounding it too.

“Having seen the recent pleas from teachers asking the government for clarity on what is deemed an exceptional circumstance, we were keen to hear the public’s thoughts on this matter which is why we ran this poll.

“It’s evident throughout the findings that the people of South Yorkshire put family first. All too often it’s presumed that people take their children out of school for financial reasons, keen to bag a bargain or escape peak prices. However, as this survey suggests, the majority don’t expect financial factors to be considered as an exceptional circumstance – there are so many other ways to save money on your holiday. Instead, it’s flexibility to support family life that topped the list.”

Visit www.holidayextras.co.uk for more details.