Lisa PercivalLisa Percival

Lisa Percival Wiki- Lisa Percival Biography

Lisa Percival, 35, took Hunter, eight, and Pandora, six, to Cyprus on June 10 for a 10-day ‘educational’ all-inclusive family holiday, knowing she would be faced with a £60 fine for each child for their unauthorised absence

But after returning from the £2,000 trip, Ms Percival claims she only received a penalty notice for her daughter and was never issued a fine for her son.

The mother claims she assumed her son did not receive one because his attendance was higher than Pandora’s. But five months later, she received a single justice procedure notice through the post from North Northamptonshire Council, saying she was being charged under the Section 444 (1) of the Education Act 1996.

The notice means Ms Percival could have pleaded guilty and avoided court altogether but she refused to do this as it would mean admitting to a criminal offense and therefore having a criminal record.

Section 444 (1) of the Education Act 1996 states that if a child of compulsive school age who is a registered pupil at a school fails to attend regularly at school, their parent is guilty of an offence.

A person charged with the offense has to prove they had a ‘reasonable justification’ for their child’s failure to attend regularly at the school.

The mother of two was given until November 4 to plead guilty or not guilty to the charge and said being convicted would have a detrimental effect on her career and financial situation.

Although Ms Percival repeatedly contacted the local council to explain she did not ever receive a fine in the post for her son, she says she received no response.

But after being contacted by journalists, North Northamptonshire Council agreed to reissue the fine, meaning she has 28 days to pay it before facing a criminal record.

Lisa Percival Age 

Lisa Percival Age  is 35 years old.

Fine for taking her son on a term-time holiday ‘went missing in the post’

Lisa, from Kettering in Northamptonshire, said: ‘This is the first time I have taken my children out of school for a holiday and I assumed that because my daughter’s [overall] attendance was worse than my son’s, [that’s why] I was fine for her [and not him].

‘I strongly disagree that parents should be criminalized for something so trivial, especially when I didn’t receive the fine letter [for my son] in the first place.

‘I don’t understand how I can be a criminal for one child and not the other. I have been trying to contact North Northamptonshire Council since October 20th [when I received the charge letter] and no one has responded.

‘I have asked to pay the fine for my son and even looked online to see if I could find the council’s bank statement so I can transfer the money before [going] to court.

‘No one at the council has been helpful. I don’t think it’s fair that they can send me a [fine] letter in the post on not recorded delivery but then when I don’t receive it [they] issue a criminal charge, as this can have serious consequences.
‘It’s almost as if they’re trying to catch me out.’

Ms Percival said she took her children out of school during term time because it was cheaper and believed her children would educationally benefit from the trip.

She said she has now been informed that her son’s penalty should have been paid by August 10th but because his penalty charge was ‘lost’ she was n’t given the opportunity to do so.

North Northamptonshire Council failed to chase up the payment, according to Ms Percival, who said she paid her daughter’s fine within 48 hours of receiving it.

Speaking before being offered a fresh 28 days to pay the fine, Ms Percival said: ‘If I enter a guilty plea we don’t need to go to court and then this comes with an automatic criminal record, regardless of the sentence. This is what I want to avoid.

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‘But if I plead not guilty, I could go to court and explain the situation and want to pay the fine but then they could still find me guilty and would still receive the criminal record.

‘I don’t think it’s in the public interest for it to go to court. As a landlord, it is definitely not in my tenants’ interest to go to court as I could potentially have to issue 12 S21 eviction notices as I may no longer be able to do my job.

‘I’ve got until November 4th until I have to enter a plea and it goes to court. ‘The whole process is barbaric.’

She added she does not blame her children’s school for the confusion as she knew taking Pandora and Hunter on holiday during term time would be classified as an unauthorised absence.

A spokesperson from North Northamptonshire Council said: ‘We have been made aware of some postal issues recently and as such, offering the benefit of the doubt and in order to seek a satisfactory resolution for all parties, the local authority has contacted the court and requested.

The matter be withdrawn from hearing to enable payment of the original penalty notice. We apologize for any distress caused.


‘We have agreed to reissue the fixed penalty notice via post, with a copy via email, allowing the full 28 days to pay as originally afforded.’