Edinburgh Bank Holiday: Parents say extra school holiday after Queen's death is at too short notice

Parents are complaining that adding an extra day to the October school holiday at short notice is causing them a childcare headache.

Edinburgh pupils missed out on the Bank Holiday declared for Monday September 19, the day of the Queen's funeral, because schools were already closed for the autumn holiday.

But they were promised another day off to compensate and now the city council has decided to add the additional day to the October break, meaning schools will now resume on Wednesday, October 26.

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However, parents were only told of the date for the extra holiday in an email on Friday (September 30). And Lothian Tory MSP Jeremy Balfour says many of them are unhappy about the move.

He said: "It's literally just two weeks to the break and I've had quite a number of parents contact me to say, how are working parents meant to provide for this with such short notice?

"I don't think anyone's against them having a holiday, but why not add it on sometime next year?

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"To give parents only two weeks' notice to find childcare suggests the council is thinking more about teachers than parents.

"The email only came out on Friday to parents and they now have to run around to make arrangements, perhaps having to take a day's holiday - but they may have meetings already planned.

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Parents have complained the short notice of the extra day's holiday is creating childcare problems.

"It just shows a lack of thinking by the council if they assume parents can suddenly drop everything with little notice."

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He suggested the extra day could instead be added to the Christmas holiday or Easter or one of next year's bank holidays around May.

A council spokesperson said: “Due to the funeral of Her Majesty the Queen last month several local authorities lost a scheduled holiday so the Scottish Government granted an additional day as a replacement.

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"In Edinburgh this has been added onto the October break with parents/carers informed last week, giving them over three weeks’ notice. We apologise for any additional inconvenience caused by this unforeseen readjustment of the school year.”

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