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E-petition debate on term-time leave from school for holidays

21 October 2015

On Monday 26 October the House of Commons debates an e-petition about term-time leave from school for holiday. The debate was scheduled by the Petitions Committee following a petition started on

The debate, led by Steve Double MP, a member of the Petitions Committee, will start at 4.30pm on Monday 26 October in Westminster Hall. The debate is on the motion: "That this House has considered an e-petition relating to term-time leave from school for holiday."

The petition, which has been signed by over 118,000 people, was considered by the House of Commons Petitions Committee at its meeting on Tuesday 13 October 2015.

Why is this e-petition being debated?

The Petitions Committee has the power to schedule debates on e-petitions in the House of Commons Second Chamber, Westminster Hall. It considers all petitions which receive over 100,000 signatures for debate. In deciding which petitions should be debated, it takes into account how many people have signed the petition, the topicality of the issue raised, and whether the issue has recently been debated in Parliament.

What will the e-petition debate achieve?

Debates on e-petitions in Westminster Hall are general debates about the issues raised by the e-petition. MPs can discuss the petition and, if they wish, ask questions about the Government's position on the issue or press the Government to take action. A Government Minister takes part in the debate and answers the points raised. These debates help to raise the profile of a campaign and could influence decision-making in Government and Parliament.
E-petition debates in Westminster Hall cannot directly change the law or result in a vote to implement the request of the petition. Creating new laws, or changing existing ones, can only be done through the parliamentary legislative process which involves a number of debates, and detailed consideration of the law in draft, in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. This process is normally started by the Government, although there are some ways in which individual MPs or members of the House of Lords who are not in the Government (known as "backbenchers") can ask Parliament to consider new laws.

Further information on how laws are made

Get involved

Have your say in an online forum discussion

The online parenting organisation is running a forum discussion in advance of the debate. Please note you will need to be an existing member of or sign up for free in order to take part.

Alternatively, you could contact your MP directly to tell them why this debate is important to you and suggest any points you would like them to raise.

Attend a free event before the debate

The Petitions Committee has organised a small event in the House of Commons before the debate for petitioners and members of the public interested in the petition issue. The Chair of the Committee and the debate lead and Committee Member Steve Double MP (tbc) will be on hand to explain and answer questions about the Committee and the e-petition debate. It will also be an opportunity to share views on the subject of the petition. Please note spaces are limited and attendance will only be confirmed once you have sent an RSVP.

When: Monday 26 October from 3 to 4pm

Where: Committee Room 16, House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA

RSVP: Please RSVP by 5pm on Friday 23 October stating your name and why you wish to attend (for example you signed the petition/ you have different views to those of the petitioners or you are interested in e-petition debates). Your place will be confirmed by email.

Watch the debate online

You can watch the e-petition debate live from 4.30pm on Monday 19 October:

After the debate, the video will be available permanently from this page. A transcript of the debate will also be available and appear on this page a couple of days afterwards.

Attend the debate

All debates in Westminster Hall are open to the public. Please note that spaces are limited and allocated on a first-come first-seated basis.

Start your own petition

Further information

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