Page last updated 08 September 2016

School Attendance and Your Child

It is your responsibility as parents or carers to ensure your child receives an appropriate education at school or otherwise. If your child is ill or unable to attend their education provision for some reason you should always contact the provider on the first day of absence.

Whilst parents and carers can give explanations for absence, it is down to individual education providers to authorise reasons given for absence.

Visit the Gov.UK website for more information about school attendance and absence.

All education providers have a duty to secure the regular attendance of their students through

  • regular monitoring of non-attendance
  • early identification of causes for concern
  • swift communication with pupils, parents or carers about the problem finding a resolution to problems and securing return to regular attendance

Where an improvement is not achieved the provider can choose to draw up a Parenting Contract. If attendance remains unacceptably low the provider will contact Educational Inclusion and Partnership who have the power to prosecute parents for not ensuring that their children receive appropriate education at school or otherwise. We are working with all education providers to improve children and young people's attendance.

The importance of school attendance

  • Education provides a means of advancement for all young people to improve their life chances.
  • Regular school attendance is a legal requirement for those registered at a school. Without it the efforts of the best teachers and schools will come to nothing.
  • Pupils need to attend regularly if they are to take full advantage of the educational opportunities available to them.
  • Irregular attendance undermines that educational process and leads to educational disadvantage. It places children at risk and in some cases it can result in pupils being drawn into patterns of anti social or criminal behaviour.

Are you having problems getting your child to school?

If you are a parent or carer and you are having problems getting your child to attend school please contact the provider first or use the Contact form.

Absence in term time

Any application for leave must only be in exceptional circumstances and the head teacher must be satisfied that the circumstances are exceptional and warrant the granting of leave. Head teachers would not be expected to class any term time holiday as exceptional.

Parents can be fined by the local authority for taking their child on holiday during term time without the consent of the school.

It’s important that parents understand that the initial fixed penalty notice of £60 is issued to each parent for each child. A two-parent family with two children would be fined £240.

Visit the Department for Education website for more information about the legislation changes. 

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