Our friends over the pond in the UK have a strict policy when it comes to kids missing school. If a child misses school when it’s not “exceptional circumstances” the parents can incur a fine and even face jail time. But one father, Jon Platt, is putting his foot down and breaking out the pocketbook to fight the policy so that he can take his kids skiing.
The Telegraph reports parents who pull their kids from class without permission from the school can face an initial £60 ($80) fine, which bumps to £120 ($160) if it isn’t paid within three weeks. If they continue to refuse to pay they will be prosecuted and fined up to £2,500 ($3,313) or up to 3 months in jail.
In April 2015 Jon Platt took his family of three to Disney World in Florida and upon returning to the UK he was slapped with a fine. He thought it was bullshit and refused to pay, The Isle of Wight Magistrate Court ruled in his favor in October 2015. The local government were none too pleased and appealed the ruling to the High Court.
That following February, while that appeal was in process, Jon Platt once again pulled his kids from school to take them skiing in Lapland Northern Finland. He was once again fined.
The case ended up in the Supreme Court and Platt ended up winning after dishing out £13,000 ($17,211) in legal defense fees, which he considers “money well spent.” Now he stands as a figurehead for parents in the UK that believe taking their kids out of school for activities like skiing is not a crime:
“We are not arguing on behalf of people whose kids don’t go to school, I’m arguing on behalf of people whose kids go to school every single day and maybe once a year they take them out for five days.”