Father fined for taking daughter, 14, out of school to mark D-Day commemorations in France

17 June 2024, 06:42

A father was fined for taking his daughter out of school to attend D-Day commemorations
A father was fined for taking his daughter out of school to attend D-Day commemorations. Picture: Getty

By Asher McShane

A father who took his 14-year-old daughter out of school to attend the D-Day commemorations in France has been slapped with a fine.

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Military vehicle restorer Neil Young said he told St Anselm’s Catholic School in Canterbury, Kent that he would be taking Emily to France for the anniversary events.

He did not receive a reply from the school and assumed there was no issue, but two days after he arrived, an attendance officer called Mr Young to ask why his daughter was not at school.

He then received an email informing him that he and his wife were facing £60 fines.

He said: “It was a bit of a blow and was not what we were expecting.

“I am disappointed in the school for being like this

“She had 100% attendance last year and this year so far.”

During their once in a lifetime trip, they laid a plaque for Emily’s great-grandfather, visited museums and three different war cemeteries, and paid their respects and met surviving WWII veterans.

Mr Young, of Shepherdswell, Kent, said: “It was no holiday and every day was educational.”

Neil challenged the decision with the headteacher Harriet Holmes, who told him: “Unfortunately the decision not to authorise this is due to Emily not being a direct part in the activities listed above.”

“Although she is experiencing these she is not required to attend and therefore we cannot authorise the absence from her education.”

However the headteacher later backed down and blamed an ‘administrative error’ despite previously standing by the fines.

She said: “The parents are not being fined as this was an administrative error that has been rectified.”

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