The other day, I thought I’d better check when half-term is. It turns out, for us at least, it’s the week beginning 11th February. Which is QUITE SOON.
I’d better book some leave, I thought. Then I looked at my leave. Not so great.
Where I work you have a leave entitlement of 24.5 days a year, which rises to 29.5 after five years’ service (I’m coming up for 14 years’ service – I could have served a whole life sentence and been let out on good behaviour by now). So I would have 29.5 days leave IF I worked full-time.
I don’t, I work part-time. I work 20 hours a week and I am eligible for the VERY PRECISE figure of 117.99 hours of leave.
Yes, that is a 0.99 at the end of that figure. Now, don’t tell anyone, but when I come to take that 0.99 of an hour, I’m actually going to help myself to the remaining 0.01 of an hour. I’m not even going to declare it. I’m just going to take it. It equates to something over 30 seconds. We live dangerously in the public sector.
Most years I’ve actually managed to carry a bit of leave over to the next year – I usually keep a bit back in case the kids are ill. Also, when I only had one or two kids at school, I found my family were more willing to look after them than they are to look after all three. I was also less inclined to take time off in the holidays because I felt I wasn’t being fair to the younger ones by taking days off just to spend time with one or two of the kids. So last year I carried over 22.49 hours, giving me a total leave for the year of 140.48 hours.
Anyway, after three full week-long holidays, plus a few odd days through the various school holidays, a hospital appointment for my son, a violin exam for him, the kids’ birthdays and my husband’s birthday, I’m left with the princely sum of 16.73 hours’ leave to cover February half-term. OK, so it’s not quite enough. But I’m sure my mum and dad, or maybe even my husband, can have them one day.
Now I wonder when Easter is…
Oh my flipping God. Easter only goes and falls in the current leave year. I repeat, EASTER FALLS IN THE CURRENT LEAVE YEAR.
So now I have to share 16.73 hours out between February half-term and the Easter holidays.