Dad gets revenge after son's school fined him £240 over family holiday
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People are divided over a father's methods of hitting back at his son's school after it fined him for taking his family on holiday.
After years of restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic, it's not hard to see why Steven Doherty fancied getting away on holiday last year with his family.
However, booking the holiday not realising the exact dates his son, Alfie, would be on Easter holidays, the prospect of a vacation became tainted when Alfie's school in Salford, Greater Manchester, fined the dad a whopping £240 for taking him out of school without permission last year.
After finding out there was recent strike action which resulted in Alfie missing school, Doherty's made sure to have the last laugh in the best way most parents know how - a strongly worded email. Prepare to be left in stitches.
Doherty sent an email to the school to contest their previous decision to fine him, calling the move 'hypocritical' given the school's strike days.
Doherty's email reads: "Good Evening [name redacted]. You probably won't remember me but my name is Steven Doherty. My son Alfie is in year eight. I contacted you when he was in year seven. Whilst waiting to see which high school he was accepted in we booked a holiday for the following Easter. We thought we were doing the responsible thing by looking up the term dates on Salford education website & booking during these dates.
"Unfortunately after being accepted at your school the Easter holidays at your school were slightly different to what was on the Salford education website meaning Alfie would miss a couple of days of school.
"I emailed you telling you the predicament we were in, attaching screenshots of the term dates on Salford education's website to prove our position.
"You wrote back to me stating you had a 'zero tolerance' for absence not due to sickness and explained to me how important Alfie's education was and I would be fined for the unauthorised absence."
The 44-year-old father went on to note his 'disappointment' in the school for not reviewing 'the situation' given he hadn't ever intended for Alfie to miss any school.
However, he did commend the school's 'serious' approach to 'pupils' education'.
Alas, that's where the compliments from the father end.
The email continues: "This evening I returned home from work to be greeted by a serious-looking Alfie. He said, 'Dad sit down I need to tell you something'.
"I said, 'What is it son?'. He said, 'I've not been in school today'. I asked, 'Why? Are you ill son?'. He replied, 'No Dad. The teachers were on strike'.
"I was gobsmacked! You could've knocked me over with a Year 7's PE bag."
Doherty explained he initially thought his son's explanation must have been a mistake, joking Mr 'Zero tolerance' wouldn't let it happen.
The father continued: "Alfie replied, 'I know dad. They've put their short-term monetary gains before my education and my future'. I said, 'You're right son'."
Doherty concluded by scolding the school that he's 'not angry, [...] just disappointed,' before resolving: "So I will be fining each teacher that should've taught Alfie today [...] The fine is £120 per teacher.
"Now I will show some understanding of the situation and with times being so hard for teachers at the moment if the fine is paid before 14th February, 2023 I will be willing to half the amount. Payment can be made via PayPal to [redacted] or my bank details are [redacted]."
People have been left divided over Doherty's email to the school which he shared on Facebook.
One wrote: "This is brilliant, I love it."
"That's f****ing genius," another said.
However, another commented: "Industrial action is an authorised absence."
According to Doherty, the school hasn't commented further on the email other than to ask him to take his Facebook post down to protect its data.
Tyla has contacted St Ambrose Barlow RC High School for comment.
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