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To ensure that attendance becomes outstanding, we need to share an understanding of our expectations in this area.


The government has established a minimum target of 96% attendance to be achieved by all students. The government also believes that punctuality to school is critical and it underlines this belief by requiring schools to classify lateness to school as truancy. The school’s thresholds for the year’s attendance and punctuality are:




Days absent during one school year



Less than 5 days absence



Less than 10 days absence

Cause for concern


10+ days absence

Major cause for concern

Below 90%

19+ days absence


These thresholds are used for reporting to parents and also form the basis of the system of referral to our Education Welfare Officer.


These thresholds are important. In an academic context, you might rightly consider a result of 96% to be good. In the context of attendance, it is not. To achieve 96% attendance, a student will have missed two weeks of school. This will have denied them access to a significant part of the curriculum in all their subjects and, unless strenuous efforts are made to cover the work missed, is likely to result in underachievement in examinations. We, therefore, take the issue of attendance extremely seriously.


Authorisation for absence will not be given for outings, shopping trips or family visits. Holidays should be taken during the school breaks and not during term time. In exceptional circumstances permission may be sought from the headteacher and every case will be treated individually.


Medical appointments should be made out of school hours if at all possible. If your child has to see a doctor or dentist in school time they should attend school for as much of the day as possible. It is not permitted to take a whole day off school for a medical appointment unless the appointment lasts all day.


Why punctuality is so important:

  • Children that arrive late are likely to have missed the start of the lesson which makes it more difficult for them to learn as the lesson progresses.

  • Late arrivals distract classmates and interrupt the teacher’s lesson.

  • Children that arrive late are likely to feel unsettled and are embarrassed to walk into assembly once it has started.

  • Children that arrive late are developing bad habits. It sets up your child for the future; whether at secondary school, college or work. They could lose their place or job if they think it is acceptable to be late.


The school day starts at 9.00am. The register is taken twice a day; once at the start of the morning session and once at the start of the afternoon session. Children will receive a late mark if they are not in class by 9.01am. The register officially closes at 9.15am, after which time pupils arriving without good reason will be marked as U which counts as a legal absence.

For any pupils where punctuality continues to be a problem, parents are invited in to meet with the Attendance Officer.