Pulling kids out of school for a WDW trip

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by aristocatz, Jan 28, 2019.

  1. aristocatz

    aristocatz DIS Veteran

    Feb 22, 2009
    I know its been discussed a million times, but for the first time, it's me.

    DD started kindergarten this year and we pulled her out of school for a week to go to WDW. It was a family trip with my parents. My mom has cancer and we don't have too many years left with either of them, so its important to me that my kids have these memories with them. January was the time of year we could afford and take off from work.

    We let her teacher know well in advance and her teacher was completely fine with it and understanding of our motive to build these memories with her grandparents. She was kind enough to put some homework together for her before the trip, and my DD finished it all. DD does very well in school and the teacher has no concerns about her progress.

    We received a letter in the mail today, from the school, letting us know about the absences. It was a pretty generic looking letter, reminding us of the importance of good attendance, etc...

    I don't regret it, and my parents are looking into booking for next year. I know there's going to be a point when I can no longer do it, but I also know there's going to be a point when my parents can no longer do it and I don't want to waste this precious time for my girls.

    Is it wrong??
  2. firefly_ris

    firefly_ris DIS Veteran

    Nov 25, 2015
    It might be wrong but I'm doing it next week. I have a kindergartner, 1st grader and 3rd grader. We don't do it often. When they are in the higher grades, we probably won't anymore. I have not had any issues -- I let all of their teachers know ahead of time and everyone has been totally fine with it. My kids also all do well in school both socially and academically so there isn't any concern that they'll fall behind missing those 5 days, plus I bring school work with us that is worked on in the evening. If any of my kids were having a difficult time with something in school, I would probably think twice about having intentional absences but so far that's not been the case.
    DisLiss, PollyannaMom and aristocatz like this.
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  4. ronandannette

    ronandannette I gave myself this tag and I "Like" myself too!

    May 4, 2006
    Not wrong by me. We did it several times for vacation when our DS was in school. Once for DLR we took not only our son but also one of his high school buddies out when they were in Grade 11. It wasn't for a whole week because they had a professional day or two in there (I forget) but regardless, we didn't feel the slightest bit bad about it. :earboy2:
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  5. low-key

    low-key DIS Veteran

    Apr 8, 2011
    I always did it for my daughter, and her best friend, only one teacher made life bad for her, the other were real cool about it, saying right a report on it and stuff like that
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  6. tinkerbellandeeyor

    tinkerbellandeeyor DIS Veteran

    Aug 4, 2011
    I don't see the problem it's no different than any other family vacation you cant get time with family back once lost
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  7. justafigment27

    justafigment27 Mouseketeer

    Mar 8, 2015
    I was pretty vigilant about my kids not missing any school for vacation when they were younger … my oldest missed one day of kindergarten so we could leave early for spring break and I think that was about it in terms off time off for vacation. And now, with both of them in high school, I look back and wonder why I was so concerned when they were little. I think half of their friends missed a week of school sometime during their elementary years so they could go to Disney. I could have saved a boatload of money by scheduling trips in the Fall or early January through at least the lower elementary grades.
  8. SaintsManiac

    SaintsManiac DIS Veteran

    Dec 9, 2014
    My daughter is in 3rd grade. We pulled her out Labor Day week. I won’t do it again. It had no effect on her grades, but I was stressed about it.

    A day doesn’t matter to me, but I won’t do a whole week again.
    aristocatz likes this.
  9. bjscheel

    bjscheel (Avatar art by my daughter)

    Jan 27, 2005
    We did it through 5th grade and school had absolutely no problem. Then older DD was too nervous to miss in middle school. By late high school she figured she could miss again but we didn't do it.

    I know some schools are uptight about it but our wasn't.
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  10. LSUmiss

    LSUmiss DIS Veteran

    Sep 8, 2014
    My dad died within a month of discovering he had pancreatic cancer. He never got to meet DS & those are memories we’ll never have that we thought we would one day. Time is more precious IMO than anything else. So...my answer is no, it’s not wrong.
  11. ForMyBoys

    ForMyBoys DIS Veteran

    Jan 13, 2013
    With my oldest in HS he doesn't like missing so we don't pull him out, but his spring break is a different week then my other two kids so they are both being pulled out for 6 school days this year. The teachers are pretty understanding. For us, since our kids are in different schools (private and public) it is hard for us to travel during the year without pulling at least one kid out of school. My husband really can't travel over the Christmas holiday due to his job and during summer we prefer to stay local as my mom comes for the summer and the weather is actually nice here in the summer. I feel like I need a trip somewhere warm in late winter/early spring or I can't make it through our winter!
  12. L&Lfan

    L&Lfan DIS Veteran

    Jun 6, 2008
    We only vacationed when we were out of school ( summers and school holidays) so it wasn’t an issue. My parents were old school about missing school.
    mco65, Gumbo4x4, Southernmiss and 2 others like this.
  13. Toolulu22

    Toolulu22 DIS Veteran

    Feb 22, 2015
    To each his/her own. However, we take our vacations during any one of the 13 weeks out of the year we have off from school.
    sk!mom, Gumbo4x4, ICF and 2 others like this.
  14. siren0119

    siren0119 DIS Veteran

    Sep 26, 2018
    We pulled our kids out of school in Sept 2017 for a week at Disney (They were 3rd and 5th grade at the time). No guilt whatsoever, I was very communicative with the teachers in advance and right before the trip, and older DS knew he would have some work to make up when he got back. Those memories were totally worth it. We don't have the money to travel during peak periods, but we can make bigger trips happen once in a while during off seasons and I think those experiences are important..as is the close family time.

    Now, older DS has a much more intense workload - BUT his school is very tech-forward and most of his school work is online or sent through Google Classrooms so we could VERY reasonably keep him on top of his work if we pulled him out for a week. I would only consider it if his grades were in good shape and I felt confident he wouldn't fall behind.
  15. dotfurio

    dotfurio DIS Veteran

    May 22, 2014
    Well DH and I are teachers and we've done it, and so have a lot of our colleagues, so there ya go...
  16. Southernmiss

    Southernmiss I am hazed everyday

    Aug 27, 2011
    I understand why you did it and early elementary doesn't matter too much.

    Schools get federal and maybe state funding for butts in the seat. So they are vigilant about absenteeism as it lowers their funding.

    Did you notify the office or just the teacher about your plan to take her out.

    Having prior notification may have stopped them from sending the letter.

    This was us, too.

    It was a dilemma but the right thing for us to take my 4 out for 3 days to go out of town for their grand father's funeral. Other than that, we used the given vacation time.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2019
    tink1970 likes this.
  17. wilbret

    wilbret Mouseketeer

    Aug 1, 2018
    Elementary school, no problem, especially if the kids are doing well. We don't typically pull them out for a full week, but we may take off days in an already short week.
    We let the teachers know ahead of time. PS, my wife is a teacher, which makes it a little easier.
  18. Skippy918

    Skippy918 DIS Veteran

    Jul 29, 2012
    I took my kids out for a day because we flew back home to celebrate grandma’s 95th birthday. We do all our major vacations when school is out. It’s a win win because we don’t have to pay for summer camp the week we are on vacation. Both of us work, so the kids need some sort of summer child care. It’s also less stressful because the vacations can be longer too and I don’t want to worry about them having to catch up with school work. They are not the type who would willingly do extra work on a trip or after we return.
    PollyannaMom likes this.
  19. sjrec

    sjrec DIS Veteran

    May 31, 2016
    I think there’s plenty of good reasons to take family vacations during the school year-especially when your kids are little and are doing well in school. I was in education, so we traveled during the summer. After I retired we took a trip in the spring-what a difference! My husband pointed out he even thought people were more pleasant because it wasn’t 100 degrees and so crowded! So if you’re traveling with older family members with health issues (and I hope your mother is doing well) I can certainly understand wanting to travel during the off season.
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  20. Colleen27

    Colleen27 DIS Veteran

    Mar 31, 2007
    Two of my three taken-out-of-school-for-Disney kids are basically adults and I don't regret a single trip. I love that we can travel during the summer now - there are so many more places that are fun to see in June than in January! - but when the kids were small, DH was in residential construction and couldn't afford to take time off during the season. So we pulled the kids out of school almost every winter to travel, often to WDW, and it hasn't hurt them any. One kid is in a skilled trades program and working full time, already making more than I do with my four-year degree, and the other is counting down to the end of her senior year with a GPA above 4 and acceptances to two good colleges in hand, just waiting for a few more responses before she commits anywhere.
  21. sasywtch

    sasywtch DIS Veteran

    May 16, 2008
    My exH was a manager for a soft drink company and ran the state fair until after labor day (now it's different). So, our vacation would be a week after the kids started school. We always took the kids out for a week until they reached junior high (middle). If any of my kids had been behind, I don't think I would have but they all ended up in the gifted program. The worksheets and reading they gave me for them to do, they did in the car on the way up/back.
    LongLiveRafiki and PollyannaMom like this.

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