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St John's C of E Primary School

"Sharing joy and hope in the community."


Attendance and Absence

Since September 2013 the Government has said schools may NOT grant ANY leave of absence during term time unless there are EXCEPTIONAL circumstances.  If the school refuses your request and the child is still taken out of school, this will be recorded as an unauthorised absence and noted on your child’s attendance record.  Persistent unauthorised absence may result in a penalty fine.  Please complete and return your request prior to making any bookings and at least four weeks before the anticipated leave date.  If there are exceptional circumstances, such as a funeral, please complete and return the form as soon as possible please.  For safeguarding reasons,  is very important that the school knows where your child is so please inform the school of any absence.



Regular and punctual attendance is vital if a child is to progress at school. Children should be at school no later than 8.55am (9.00am for registration) although there is supervision on the playground from 8.45am. Children who arrive after the close of the register will be marked late. Attendance is regular monitored by the schools Education Attendance Officer and the Headteacher, Mr Priestley. A half termly audit is carried out for any child with an attendance below 92% and an action plan put into place, which many involve meeting parents, discussing absence with class teacher and issuing warning letters and agreements. Our County Attendance officer is in regular contact and will monitor these children.
Reporting Your Child's Absence
If your child has an absence from school it must be reported to the school by telephoning the school on 01823 662541 on each day of absence explaining the reason. This enables us to keep their records up to date and helps alleviate the fear of missing children. If we have not heard from you, we will contact you to find out why your child is not in school. In the case of extended illnesses, please liaise with their class teacher who will arrange for work to be sent home. Following national legislation and county guidance, permission for absence other than illness or bereavement is only given in exceptional circumstance.
The impact of persistent absences
“Being half an hour late to school each day from Year 1 to Year 10 is approximately equivalent to missing one year of schooling.” Student Attendance and Educational Outcomes: Every Day Counts – Zubrick et al (2013)
“Poor attendance can disrupt a pupil’s learning and mean that they fall behind their peers in class. Persistent absence from school can put particular emphasis on this knowledge gap and place the pupil at a significant disadvantage academically. Pupils missing more than 10% of school due to unauthorised absences, have significantly lower odds of meeting the expected level at Key Stage 2 than pupils with no unauthorised absences.” A profile of pupil absence in England, Department of Education.(2011)



With effect from September 2015, the Persistent Absence threshold increased to 90% (previously 85%). This will mean that any pupil whose attendance is lower than 90%, at any point in the school year, will be classed as Persistently Absent.


The table below shows the impact of whole days absent and lost learning hours in one school year.




Whole Days Absent

Lost Hours of Learning


100% - 99%

0 - 2

0 - 10


98% - 96%

4 - 7.5

20 – 37.5

Requires improvement

95% - 91%

9.5 - 17

47.5 - 85

Persistent Absentee

90% - 86%

19 - 27

95 - 135


85% - 80%

28.5 - 38

142.5 – 190


The Department for Education say there is clear evidence of a link between poor attendance at school and low levels of achievement. St John’s school is committed to ensuring the best possible outcomes for our pupils.


Along with the Education Welfare Officer we have reviewed the attendance so far for the year and we will be issuing letters to all parents whose child attendance has dropped below 92%.