Absent Pupils During Term Time

Andrew Hooper made this Freedom of Information request to Isle of Wight Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Isle of Wight Council,

A. How many children of compulsory school age live on the Isle of Wight?

B. How many IOW children attend local authority schools?

C. How many IOW children attend private schools?

D. How many IOW children are registered as being home tutored?

E. In the past 3 years, for each of B to D above:

i. How many non-authorised absences were there in each category?

ii. How many prosecutions did the IOW Council initiate in each category?

iii. How many of the prosecutions initiated resulted in the parents receiving a fine in each category?

Yours faithfully,

Andrew Hooper

Freedom of Information, Isle of Wight Council

Thank you for your email. The office will be closed from 4pm on the 23
December 2016 until 8.30am on the 3 January 2017. We will deal with your
enquiry promptly on our return. If your email is urgent you may wish to
check emergency contact details on our website [1]www.iwight.com.

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CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Please find attached an acknowledgement of your FOI request.

 

Kind regards

Charlotte

 

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator

Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle
of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30
1UD | (: 01983 821000 | *: [1][email address] | 8:
[2]http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...

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Dear CServicesFOI,

I received an acknowledgment of my request from the IOW Council dated 23 December 2016. Therefore this is the date that you are working to, not the 3 January 2017 as claimed in your recent correspondence.

With the Christmas holidays it may not make much difference but two acknowledgements of receipt 14 days apart and claiming different dates for an FOI Request is not acceptable.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

I note that the initial email you received was an automated 'out of office' message, informing that council offices closed on 23rd December, and re-opened on 3rd January. We sent you a formal acknowledgement of your request on the first day that the council offices opened after the Christmas and new year office closure. A response to your request is due by 25th January in accordance with the statutory time scales. I trust this clarifies the situation.

Kind regards

Charlotte

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator
Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD | : 01983 821000 | |: [email address] | |: http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...
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CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Please find attached response to your FOI request.

 

Regards

 

Kirstie Rann | Business Services Officer

Isle of Wight Council | Directorate for Children’s Services | Schools &
Learning Division |  Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight PO30
1UD

Tel: (01983) 821000 ext 6259 | Internal ext: 6259 | Email:
[1][email address] | Web:
[2]http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...

 

Please note my working days are Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

 

 

 

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Dear CServicesFOI,

Thank you for your reply. Unfortunately it does not address absences from private schools nor home tutored children. I note your distinction between private and local authority home tutored children, so both these data are requested.

Are the parents of privately educated or home tutored children exempt from local authority prosecution? If not, then please provide the data for these.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

Thank you for your email. I can confirm that I have sent your queries to the colleague that provided the information and will get back to you shortly.

Kind regards

Charlotte

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator
Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD | : 01983 821000 | |: [email address] | |: http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...
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CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Thank you for your email.

 

The Local Authority have no remit in the independent sector in regards to
attendance so we cannot provide a response.

 

In regards to electively home educated children – if the Local Authority
is not satisfied that a child is receiving a satisfactory education they
can serve a School Attendance Order, directing the child to attend a
mainstream school. If a parent does not comply with the Order then they
are liable to prosecution under Section 444. In 2013/14, one School
Attendance Order was served.

 

Kind regards

 

Charlotte

 

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator

Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle
of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30
1UD | (: 01983 821000 ext. 6907 | *: [1][email address] | 8:
[2]http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...

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Dear CServicesFOI,

Can you please clarify your response by specifying the number of cases brought by the IOW Council against parents under:

a. Education Act 1996, 1996 c. 56, Part VI, Chapter II, Section 1A;

b. Education Act 1996, 1996 c. 56, Part VI, Chapter II, Section 1;

c. Education Act 1996, 1996 c. 56, Part VI, Chapter II, Section 1 due to the parent taking the child away on holiday.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

Thank you for your email. I will send your query onto the relevant officer and get back to you in due course.

Kind regards

Charlotte

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator
Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD | : 01983 821000 | |: [email address] | |: http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...
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Dear CServicesFOI,

Please note that a response to this request is required by the end of today to meet the FOI legislation timescales. Obviously it would be convenient to withhold this information until the current IOW Council Court Proceedings concerning absenteeism during state school term time has completed, but that would be unlawful.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

Thank you for your email. Please accept our apologies; we did not process this as a new request as we understood you were seeking clarification from our last response.

We can confirm that we have chased the relevant department for this information and we will endeavour to respond by the end of the week.

Please accept our sincere apologies for the delay and any inconvenience caused.

Best wishes

Charlotte

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator
Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD | : 01983 821000 | |: [email address] | |: http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...
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CServicesFOI, Isle of Wight Council

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Please find attached a response to your FOI request. Please accept our
apologies for the delay.

 

Kind regards

 

Charlotte

 

Charlotte Heard | Business Services Administrator

Directorate for Children's Services | Schools and Learning Division | Isle
of Wight Council | Floor 4 | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30
1UD | (: 01983 821000 | *: [1][email address] | 8:
[2]http://www.iwight.com/Residents/Schools-...

As part of our commitment to Eco Island please don't print unless
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Important Information - Disclosure, Confidentiality and Monitoring of this email

This email communication may be monitored by the Isle of Wight Council for regulatory, quality control, or crime detection purposes.

If you are not the Intended Recipient please contact the sender as soon as possible. It is intended only for the personal attention of the named person, firm or company to whom it is addressed. It may contain information that is privileged and confidential in law. Accordingly any unauthorised dissemination, distribution, copying or other use of this message or any of its content by any other person may constitute a breach of civil or criminal law and is strictly prohibited. No mistake in transmission is intended to waive or compromise any such privilege. Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender and may not necessarily reflect the views of the Isle of Wight Council.

The information contained in this e-mail may be subject to disclosure to third parties under either the Data Protection Act 1998 or the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to the extent the law allows and in accordance with the Isle of Wight Council's policies on information management. (If you wish the disclosure of the information in any reply to be restricted please make this clear in your response).

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Dear Isle of Wight Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Isle of Wight Council's handling of my FOI request 'Absent Pupils During Term Time.

You state that you are unable to give reasons for prosecutions due to possible multiple reasons. This is an unacceptable response.

If you are prosecuting an individual then you are required by the Human Rights Act to have good and lawful reason to do so.

Therefore, please provide the reasons in detail for each and every case that you have prosecuted eg. Lateness, holiday etc., and the period of time that the child was on holiday or number of times they were late etc.

These data will be available as part of your prosecution case.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/a...

Yours faithfully,

Andrew Hooper

Driscoll, Sarah, Isle of Wight Council

1 Attachment

Good afternoon,

 

Please find attached an acknowledgement to your appeal request.

 

Kind regards

Sarah

 

Sarah Driscoll | Information Access Officer | Corporate Information Unit

Isle of Wight Council | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight PO30 1UD

Tel: (01983) 821000 ext 6330 | DX:56361 NEWPORT (IOW)

Email: [1][email address] | Web: [2]www.iwight.com

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Please note my working days are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday.

 

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Niemiec, Vanda, Isle of Wight Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Please find attached a reply to your above referenced FOI internal appeal.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Vanda Niemiec | Senior Information Management Officer | Corporate
Information Unit |  Legal Services | Isle of Wight Council | County Hall |
Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD

Tel: (01983) 821000 | Email: [1][email address] | Web:
[2]www.iwight.com

 

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Dear Niemiec, Vanda,

Thank you for this reply, however, it only partially answers my request for information.

Of the 11 cases that you prosecuted due to unauthorised holiday absences, how many were prosecuted under Section 444(1) and how many under Section 444(1)A?

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

Niemiec, Vanda, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

All the 11 cases were brought under Section 444(1).

Yours sincerely

Vanda Niemiec

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Dear Niemiec, Vanda,

Please explain why all these parents were prosecuted under s.444(1) and not s.444(1A).

Section 444(1A) requires knowledge on the part of the parent and a failure to take reasonable action. Therefore, knowingly taking children on holiday during term-time falls under s.444(1A).

However, it is clearly convenient for the Council to avoid prosecutions under s.444(1A) as the parents would be entitled to be legally represented at Public expense and to offer defences that are precluded under s.444(1).

It is clear that the IOW Council is avoiding the correct section of the Education Act to secure easier convictions by denying parents their right to public funded legal representation and legitimate defences. This is clearly an abuse of the legal process.

Please detail why the Council has taken this position and provide copies of all documents discussing and/or providing legal advice on the Council's strategy for prosecuting parents.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Hooper

Niemiec, Vanda, Isle of Wight Council

Dear Mr Hooper

Thank you for your email.

The Freedom of Information Act provides a right of access to recorded information. It seems that the only information you are requesting relates to ' copies of all documents discussing and/or providing legal advice on the Council's strategy for prosecuting parents'. Accordingly, this has been logged as a new FOI request under the above reference.

The remainder of your email does not appear to be requesting any records, so I am not able to respond.

The council will aim to respond to your new FOI request within the statutory 20 working day timescale.

Yours sincerely

 
Vanda Niemiec (Miss) | Senior Information Management Officer | Corporate Information Unit |  Legal Services | Isle of Wight Council | County Hall | Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD
Tel: (01983) 821000 | Email: [email address] | Web: www.iwight.com

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Niemiec, Vanda, Isle of Wight Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Hooper

 

Thank you for your information request dated 24^th July 2017 for
information relating to action taken against parents for unauthorised
absences from school.

 

Your request has been given careful consideration and I can confirm that
the Council does hold the information requested. Unfortunately, however,
the Council is unable to comply with your request for the reasons set out
in the Refusal Notice enclosed.

 

If you have any complaints in respect of your information request, please
write to the Corporate Information Unit at [Isle of Wight Council request email], or
complete the on-line appeals form that can be found at www.iwight.com. If
your complaint is not resolved to your complete satisfaction, you have the
ultimate right, once you have exhausted the internal appeals process, to
appeal to the Information Commissioner.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Vanda Niemiec (Miss) | Senior Information Management Officer | Corporate
Information Unit |  Legal Services | Isle of Wight Council | County Hall |
Newport | Isle of Wight | PO30 1UD

Tel: (01983) 821000 | Email: [1][email address] | Web:
[2]www.iwight.com

 

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If you are not the Intended Recipient please contact the sender as soon as possible. It is intended only for the personal attention of the named person, firm or company to whom it is addressed. It may contain information that is privileged and confidential in law. Accordingly any unauthorised dissemination, distribution, copying or other use of this message or any of its content by any other person may constitute a breach of civil or criminal law and is strictly prohibited. No mistake in transmission is intended to waive or compromise any such privilege. Any views expressed in this message are those of the individual sender and may not necessarily reflect the views of the Isle of Wight Council.

The information contained in this e-mail may be subject to disclosure to third parties under either the Data Protection Act 1998 or the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to the extent the law allows and in accordance with the Isle of Wight Council's policies on information management. (If you wish the disclosure of the information in any reply to be restricted please make this clear in your response).

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