The Importance of Good Attendance
Missing a few days of school here and there may not seem a big deal, but research shows that it can have a significant impact on children's learning.
97% and above – Less than 6 days absence a year! Pupils with this attendance should achieve the best possible outcomes.
96% – 8 days absence in a year. Good attendance. Pupils with this attendance are more likely to achieve their academic targets. .
90% – 20 days absence over the year. Pupils with this attendance are missing approximately a month (20 days) of school per year and may fall behind in Maths, English and other subjects; it will be difficult for them to achieve their best. With this level of attendance, the Department for Education consider children to be a ‘Persistent Absentee’.
85% – 30 days absence in a year. These pupils are missing approximately 6 weeks of school a year. It will be very difficult for them to keep up and achieve their best.
80% – Pupils with this attendance are missing a day for every week of school! It will be almost impossible to keep up with their work. Parents of pupils with this level of attendance will be made known to the LA and it is possible that they will face legal action.
Poor attendance often starts at primary school, and children who fall into this pattern are likely to underachieve at secondary school.
Pupils who miss between 10 and 20% of school (that’s 19 to 38 days per year) stand only a 35% chance of achieving five or more good GCSEs, compared to 73% of those who miss fewer than 5% of school days.
Friendships can be affected by persistent absence, too: it can be hard for a child who misses lots of school to form relationships with their classmates.
Reporting an Absence
If your child is too ill to go to school, you must phone the school office on the morning of the first day of absence. If it becomes clear that your child will be away for longer than expected, phone the school as soon as possible to explain this.
If you fail to report your child as absent then a member of our mentor team will either phone you or come out to your house to check to check everything is ok.
If your child is a persistent absentee or they are off for a prolonged period of time we could ask you for medical evidence such as a doctor’s note, an appointment card or a copy of their prescription.
Authorised or Unauthorised
The following types of absence may be marked as authorised:
- Leave of absence authorised by the headteacher (such as time off due to bereavement)
- Illness: you must notify your child’s school on the morning of their first day of absence.
- Medical or dental appointments, although you should try to arrange these outside school hours if possible.
- Religious observance.
Certain types of absence will be marked as unauthorised. Unless there are exceptional circumstances, agreed by the headteacher, time off for holidays is always unauthorised.
Absences where the parents haven’t given the school a reason are also recorded as unauthorised.
If your child is late arriving at school and the registers have closed (9.25am), this will be marked as an unauthorised absence, even if they turn up later that morning.
Getting your child to school on time really matters. Did you know…
If in a school year your child is late everyday…
Your child would have lost approximately…
Or they would have missed approximately…
3.5 days from school
7 days from school
10 days from school
14.5 days from school
22 days from school