A MUM has caused a stir online after revealing she’s saved thousands of pounds by taking her kids on holiday during term time.

Rachel Smith, who lives in Clacton with her two children, enjoys an annual foreign holiday during the school year.

Despite receiving regular fines, the single mum stands by her decision as “it’s nothing compared to the cost of going away in the school holidays”.

The young family has enjoyed four term time holidays and have got their passports at the ready to head off to Mallorca this week to mark the end of 11-year-old Brayden’s SATs.

Echo: Family - Rachel, 33, Brayden, 11, and Elianna, 9, are about to go on their next family holidayFamily - Rachel, 33, Brayden, 11, and Elianna, 9, are about to go on their next family holiday (Image: Rachel Smith / SWNS)

Rachel, Brayden, and his nine-year-old sister Elianna have previously travelled to Ibiza, Magaluf, and Can Picafort.

The 33-year-old, who has saved almost £10,000 by breaking the rules, shared her experience of her last holiday on TikTok and said most people agreed with her despite receiving backlash from some viewers.

@rachelsdiaries #fyp #fypシ #foryoupage #foryou #NikeShesBallin #relate #life #follow #like #parents #holidays #schoolholidays #school #singleparent ♬ original sound - Rach

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The mum-of-two said: “I don't think them missing school to go on holiday once a year has been detrimental to their education at all.

“I always check the calendar carefully to make sure it doesn't impact their learning too much. I’m not recklessly booking holidays around things like exams or school trips.”

Despite missing lessons, both children are doing extremely well at school, with Brayden achieving full marks on his latest SATs maths mock test.

Echo: Clever - Brayden's doing great at schoolClever - Brayden's doing great at school (Image: Rachel Smith / SWNS)

Reflecting on the hours of school missed during lockdown, Rachel continued: “I taught the kids a lot myself during the Covid pandemic using textbooks as we didn’t find video lessons very easy at all.

"They learn a lot from going on holiday too. They've been able to experience other cultures, they have a massive social awareness and they're learning another language.”

The proud mum thinks an “annual leave” style system could be the answer, where parents are allocated a number of days to take children out of school for holidays, with “red zones” where holidays in the run-up to key dates are forbidden.

She concluded: “I stand by taking my children out of school for holidays. I never had that growing up, so if I can give my kids that then I'm going to.”

The local authority condemned parents who remove their children from school unlawfully.

An Essex County Council spokesperson said: “Parents have a legal duty to ensure their children attend school regularly in accordance with the rules prescribed by the school.

“Essex County Council has a statutory duty to fulfil our legal obligations in line with the Education Act 1996, but it is the expectation that schools will initially work with parents, carers and support agencies to improve a child’s school attendance, accessing all appropriate early intervention programmes and working together to improve and sustain attendance.

“Every lesson really does count, and it is important parents send their child to school so they can access and enjoy all the educational opportunities and experiences and ensure they get the best start to academic life.”