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School Attendance


*** IMPORTANT Attendance Changes from 1st September ***

The guidance issued by the Department for Education in 2022 in relation to School

Attendance (Working Together to Improve School Attendance) has now been updated and becomes statutory from 19th August 2024. We would like to highlight these expectations on parents/carers in relation to school attendance.

The expectations on parents are:

  • That you will ensure that your child attends school regularly and that you notify the school as soon as possible when your child has to be unexpectedly absent.( All absences will be unauthorised unless there is medical proof of an illness)
  • That you only request leave of absence in exceptional circumstances and that you do so in advance to the Headteacher.
  • That where possible you book medical appointments around the school day but when this cannot be avoided and your child has an appointment in school time you notify the school in advance (and if your child attends the appointment in uniform, they can return to school afterwards)
  • That you work with your child’s school and the Local Authority to help with the understanding of any barriers to your child attending school regularly.
  • That you engage with support offered.

In addition to outlining the expectations on parents, schools and Local Authorities, the Department for Education has also made changes to penalty notices: The cost of each penalty notice will increase for any offences committed after 19th August to £160 (£80 if paid within 21 days) for the first offence.

One of the changes introduced from 19th August is that where a parent takes the child out of school and commits a second offence within a rolling three year period the penalty notice amount will automatically be set at the £160 (with no reduction for early payment). For any third offence in the rolling three year period there will be no penalty notice but there will be a prosecution.

Penalty notices are issued per parent, per child.

The new guidance is implemented to support the best school attendance for every child in Halton and applies to all schools in England.


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As a parent you are legally responsible for making sure that your child goes to school.  If they can not go for any reason you should tell the school and they may authorise the absence.

We can offer support to children young people and their families to enable access and engagement with education by working in partnership with children young people, their families and schools to promote regular school attendance and participation. As a Halton Local Authority School we have a named Education Welfare Office who offers support or advice. 

Regular attendance at school is vital to help children achieve and get the best possible start in life. We encourage and celebrate good attendance in our termly achievers assembly in which all pupils who acheive 100% attendance recieve a reward.

Children who frequently miss school often fall behind.  There is a strong link between good school attendance and achieving good results.  Good attendance at school shows potential employers that a young person is reliable.  Young people who are frequently absent from school are more likely to become involved in, or be a victim of crime and anti-social behaviour.


Persistent Absence

Children whose attendance figure falls below 90% are regarded as having persistent absence, as classed by the Department for Education. In order to support in improving attendance, we take a proactive approach and will communicate concerns about poor attendance to parents and carers. Our policy states that we use an escalating approach which includes letters, meetings in school and / or a referral to the Attendance Team at Halton Borough Council.

Children who are too ill to come to school or may pass infection to others should not attend school for 48 hours from the last time they were sick.

When children are absent from school we ask parents to inform the school office or the Class teacher via Class Dojo  by 9.00am to explain your child's absence. We contact parents if we don’t hear from you. 

The school office monitors attendance and punctuality every day, should you have any concerns about your child’s attendance please speak to a member of our offcie team who can help you and pass on any concerns. 

School Holiday Dates

The School Governing Body, under the guidance of the Local Authority, decide school holiday dates for our school. These are published for parents/carers at the start of every school year and in the summer term prior to the new school year. They are displayed on our school website and a paper copy can also be obtained from the school office.

School Holiday Absence

From the 1st September 2013 the law has changed and there is no longer any entitlement to take your child on holiday during term time. A holiday request form must be completed by a parent/carer and the Head teacher may grant leave under exceptional circumstances ( please see policy). If a holiday request has been non-authourised a penalty notice may be issued.  Parent/carers will have 21 days to pay £60 per parent/carer per child. If this is not paid within 21 days, the fine increases to £120 per parent/carer per child. Failure to pay after 28 days will result in legal proceedings in the magistrates court.


Roles and Responsibilities of Governors, Headteacher and Other School Staff

The Governors will ensure that:

  • school holiday dates for each academic year are agreed by the start of the summer term in the previous school year;
  • a full consultation takes place if the main school session times are to be changed;
  • any changes to the start or end of the school day are implemented at the start of a new school year;
  • attendance targets are set each year;
  • weekly levels of lesson time, excluding collective worship, registration and breaks meet recommended levels.

The Headteacher will ensure that:

  • pupils are registered accurately and efficiently;
  • parents/carers are contacted when reasons for absence are unknown or unauthorised;
  • pupil attendance and punctuality are monitored regularly;
  • a reward system for attendance and punctuality is implemented;
  • school attendance statistics are reported to the Educational Welfare Officer and Governing Body;
  • parents/carers are written to when attendance and/or punctuality is poor;
  • where there are cases of persistent poor attendance and/or punctuality rates, these are referred to the Educational Welfare Officer;
  • parent/carers receive an attendance report with the Summer end of year reports.

Teaching staff will ensure that:

  • they register children accurately and efficiently;
  • they inform the headteacher of any children who are persistently late, have low attendance levels or have unexplained absence;
  • they encourage children to attend school regularly and inform the headteacher if they become aware of a problem that may lead to absences.

Parents/carers will be expected to:

  • ensure that their child(ren) attends school regularly;
  • ensure that their child(ren) arrives at school on time and is picked up promptly at the end of the school day;
  • inform school on the first day of non-attendance;
  • avoid taking family holidays during term time;
  • inform the school in advance of any planned absence.

Arrangements for monitoring and evaluation

The Governing Body will receive an annual attendance report from the headteacher including:

  • the rate of attendance for the school, including rates for specific groups of pupils (e.g. SEN);
  • comparison of attendance compared with the agreed target and previous year’s rates;
  • additional background information relevant to the attendance rate in school.

The headteacher and the Governing Body will evaluate the data and decide what, if any, further action is required.


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Mrs Middleton | Office Secretary

Mr E Burke | Chair of Governors

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