Europe

Parents face fines for being late to pick up children from school

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Parents are frustrated after being warned they could be fined £5 for every half an hour they are late to pick their children up from school.

The message has been sent to families with youngsters at Woodbank Primary School in Bury.

The fine threat comes as the school also reminded parents not to take children on holiday in term time, reports the Manchester Evening News. The two warnings have not gone down well with some parents – especially when potential strike action from teachers looms.

One dad, whose daughter attends the Brandlesholme school, said: “We got a message from school advising us of a £5 charge if you’re late collecting your child from school,” he said. “We also get told that the parents of kids going on holiday out of summer holidays will receive a fine. Now we’ve had a message telling us that the teachers could be going on strike on four different occasions so school will be closed – again disrupting the education.”

He added: “We get fined for being late or going on holiday because it disrupts education, but it’s okay for them to go on strike when it suits. I’ll be sending a fine to the school for disrupting my child’s education during the strike days.”

The newsletter sent to parents earlier this month states: “Please pick up your child promptly at the end of the day. If you do not you could incur a charge of £5 per half an hour.”

After stating the finish times, it adds: “Children being picked up late impacts on staff being late to meetings, the running of clubs and it also causes distress to the child.”

The letter about strike action was sent last week, confirming that, if it goes ahead as planned, the school will be closed to all-but two classes on four days – February 1, February 28 and March 15 and 16.

“I am getting in touch to give you as much notice as possible that learning will be disrupted on the above dates,” the letter from headteacher Kelly Macadam said. “We recommend that you start to make alternative childcare arrangements for these dates. I am sorry about the potential disruption to you and to your child’s education.

“I understand that this situation may be frustrating, and ask that all members of our school community continue to treat each other with respect. Woodbank remains committed to providing a safe and secure environment for our pupils and delivering high-quality teaching.

“We are working closely with our staff union representatives to keep up to date with the situation, and I will inform you of the final arrangements as soon as possible.”

Responding to the parent’s concerns, Mrs Macadam said: “It is very important that parents and carers pick up their children on time at the end of the school day.

“Children not collected on time often get upset and distressed if they do not know where their parent is. Also, staff members have to attend meetings, lead extra-curricular clubs or have work to complete, and sometimes have to leave school on time for their own child care arrangements.

“We always make allowances for exceptional circumstances such as an emergency or being stuck in traffic, and we provide a ‘before and after school’ club which parents can use if they are going to be late. We would only consider charging parents who are persistently and repeatedly late. To date, no parent has been charged.”

She added: “If any parent has any concerns about school policy, I would urge them to contact me directly.”

Source: Read Full Article