Attendance Policy

Policy reviewed and approved by Premises, Health, Safety & Wellbeing and
Safeguarding Committee – Spring Term 2017
Policy reviewed and approved by the Full Governing Body on 6

th March 2017

Date of review – Spring 2017
Next review – Autumn 2017
EWO guidance to be included Summer 2017 – this may lead to some changes to how the
CC may fine unauthorised absence.
Good attendance at school is important for your child’s education and establishes a positive working
ethos early in life. 100% attendance is unlikely, but it is essential that the school is informed of the
reasons for absence. Under current government legislation, unauthorised absence is regarded as
truancy and all absence figures have to be reported to the LA and the DfES and are recorded on a
child’s annual report. It is also important that your child arrives on time for school, as the start of the
day establishes the learning activities for the day. Lateness is recorded in the register.
By law, parents are required to ensure that their children of compulsory school age are registered at
school and attend regularly. Absence should only occur when a child is unfit to learn or has a day of
religious observance.
For your information the Local Authority Parents Leaflet has been included as part of our policy to
ensure that parents have clarity on the penalties incurred for non attendance.
Education Penalty Notices
Information for Parents

Parents have a legal duty to make sure that their children go to school regularly. The local authority can
now issue Penalty Notices if a parent fails to make sure that their children receive the education they
deserve. This leaflet tells you about these notices.

School Attendance and the Law

Any absence from school is a cause for concern. Only by attending every day will your child have the best
chance to get the most from their education.
The Headteacher at your child’s school must decide whether to authorise an absence. That is to agree that
there was a legitimate reason for your child not to be in school.
There are only five legitimate reasons for absence:
 Religious observance
 Illness of the child
 The death of a close family member
 An urgent medical or dental appointment
 To attend an important family event / celebration
The Targeted Services Division can take legal action against you if you fail to make sure that your children
go to school regularly and there is no legitimate reason for the absence. This action might take one of two
forms:

 The issuing of a Penalty Notice
 Prosecution in the local Magistrates Court
This information is about Penalty Notices and how the local authority will issue them.

What they are

Penalty Notices are fines, issued by the Targeted Services Division, for a child’s unauthorised absence from
school.
The service will always consider legal action when there is no legitimate reason for absence.

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Attendance Policy – 2017

How they will be issued

Notices will be issued by post. They will not be issued during a Truancy Sweep or as part of a meeting with
parents.

This graph shows the effect of missing time from school over a year. Every school session is important if
your child is not going to fall behind.
The Local Authority will not take legal action if previously poor attendance is now improving.
Instead they’ll monitor the case and support the pupil. If attendance doesn’t improve, or if absences begin
to increase the Local Authority will re-assess the case to see if legal action is needed.

Further information

If you have concerns about your child’s education you should, initially, discuss these with school.
If you would like further information about Penalty Notices, please contact the District Lead, of the Local
Support Team, telephone number:- 01782 296290.
Arrival and registration
All children should be in their classrooms at 8.55 am each day although children are entitled to enter
the school from 8.45am to ensure a calm start to the day.
Early morning activities are set ready for children when they enter the classroom, usually spelling
practise and mental maths activities. The register is taken twice a day: at 9am and at 1pm. A day
counts as 2 attendances.
If a child arrives after the register has been taken he/she will be marked in as Late. After 9.00am this
will become an Unauthorised Absence. It is essential that children arriving and leaving school with a
parent/guardian outside the normal hours are signed in or out from the school by completing the
signing in/out book in the entrance hall, this is used in the case of fire as an appendix to class registers.
Registers are checked regularly by the Education Welfare Officer to ensure they are kept accurately by
teachers and to assess the reasons and incidence of any absences.
Legitimate reasons for absence
Illness and medical appointments:
Every effort should be made to arrange medical and dental appointments outside school hours. If it is
necessary for a child to be out of school for this reason, the child should be returned to school directly
after the appointment. The school office should be informed during the morning of the first day of a

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Attendance Policy – 2017
child’s absence through illness and then each morning for the duration of the absence. Please see our
Pupil Illness policy for further guidance on the recommended period of absence due to sickness.
Religious observance:
If you are planning to take your child out of school for religious observance we ask that you inform the
school at least a week prior to religious holiday.
Family bereavement:
The school will work closely with, and be sympathetic to the needs of the family.
Leave of absence:
Leave of absence is a planned leave from school authorised by the Headteacher. Which is granted for
attending family events e.g weddings and other family special events.
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006
Amendments have been made to the 2006 regulations in the Education (Pupil Registration)
(England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013. These amendments, as described below, will come
into force on 1 September 2013.
Term-time holiday
With effect from 1st September 2013, amendments to the 2006 Education (Pupil Registration) (England)
Regulations removed references to family holiday and extended leave which previously had been
granted at the Headteacher’s discretion. The amendments make clear that Headteachers may not grant
any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. The following
instances may be considered as ‘exceptional circumstances’ when requests for holidays in term-time
are received:
1. It is of significant emotional, educational or spiritual value to the child, which outweighs the loss of
teaching time.
2. A parent or grandparent is seriously/terminally ill and the holiday proposed is likely to be the last
such holiday
3. There has recently been a death or other significant trauma in the family and it is felt that an
immediate holiday might help the child concerned better deal with the situation
4. The holiday is a unique, never to be repeated, occasion which can only take place at the time
requested e.g. family events – christenings, weddings, important birthdays, graduations or special,
once in a lifetime breaks.
5. Parents professions prevents holidays at a recognised period e.g. Emergency Services holiday
restrictions and shift restrictions.
6. Leave can only be taken during the requested time due to serious medical/physical needs
determined by external factors (respite/treatment plans)
The Headteacher will determine if the leave of absence request meets any of the criteria outlined above
and the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.
Process for requesting holiday absence:
If a leave of absence for exceptional circumstances is being requested, each application will be judged
on its own merit. Parents will need to write to the Headteacher, outlining the date of the proposed
leave of absence and detailing why the application is being made. When applying parents should also
state if there are siblings attending one of our partner schools so that the Headteachers from both
schools are able to make a joint decision for each family.
Parents who decide to take a holiday without permission, will incur unauthorised absences for their
child. These remain on a child’s record and are monitored for further action by the Education Welfare
Officer, and could result in court action and fine. The Local Authority may also decide to issue a Fixed
Penalty fine and / or prosecute parents under the Education Act 1996 if a holiday is taken in term-time:

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Attendance Policy – 2017
The Education (Penalty Notices) (England) Regulations 2007
Amendments have been made to the 2007 Regulations in the Education (Penalty Notices)
(England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013. These amendments, as described below, will come
into force on 1 September 2013.
The 2007 regulations set out the procedures for issuing penalty notices (fines) to each parent who fails
to ensure their children’s regular attendance at school or fails to ensure that their excluded child is not
in a public place during the first five days of exclusion. Parents must pay £60 if they pay within 28
days; or £120 if they pay within 42 days.
Amendments to 2007 regulations will reduce the timescales for paying a penalty notice. Parents must,
from 1 September 2013, pay £60 within 21 days or £120 within 28 days. This brings attendance
penalty notices into line with other types of penalty notices and allows local authorities to act faster on
prosecutions.
Arrangements for absence in other circumstances:
Sudden, serious circumstances do occur, rarely, when it is impossible for a family to bring a child to
school. It is essential that school is informed by the parent of the circumstances so that the appropriate
code can be written in the register.
Shopping trips, birthday trips and holidays at home will not be authorised.
Keeping parents informed
As from September 2012 the school will send out an end of term record of attendance so parents can
be kept fully aware of attendance percentages.
A colour-coded system supports the attendance information to further illustrate the impact on absence.
Rewarding Good Attendance
At the end of the Summer Term pupils will be awarded a certificate for high attendance.
Appendix
Colour bands – attendance

Signed: Dated: 7.3.17
Christopher Newman – Headteacher

Signed: Dated:7.3.17
Stephen Bayfield – Chair of Governors

The School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and
expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.

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Attendance Policy – 2017
Appendix A – Attendance Colour Codes
98% – 100%

WELL DONE THIS IS EXCELLENT

If you are in the green group you have been absent for less than 1 week in the
whole year or you may have attended school every day.

95% – 97%
GOOD

If you are in the yellow group you could be missing up to 2 weeks of learning in

the whole year

90% – 94%

IMPROVEMENT NEEDED

If you are in the grey group you could be missing up to 4 weeks of learning in the

school year.

Less than 90%

PERSISTENT ABSENCE PUPIL

You are now a persistent Absence Pupil and are missing more than 4 weeks of

learning in the school year.