Attendance Policy

Attendance Policy  


Priestthorpe Primary School recognizes that punctual and regular attendance is an essential precondition of social inclusion and a prerequisite to effective learning.  We aim to encourage excellent levels of attendance and punctuality to enable all pupils to take full advantage of the educational opportunities available to them.


Responsibilities of the School

Priestthorpe Primary School will encourage good attendance and punctuality and will promptly investigate all unexplained absenteeism and lateness.


Responsibilities of Parents

Parents are responsible for ensuring their child attends school regularly, properly dressed and equipped and in a fit condition to learn.  They are asked to inform the school of the absence, parents are asked to avoid arranging family holidays during term time.  If this is unavoidable, parents must complete a holiday form requesting leave during term time.  In line with guidance from the local authority, the Head is able to authorise ten days leave in any one year.  Any further leave will be unauthorised.


Responsibilities of Pupils

Pupils are expected to attend school regularly and on time.  No pupil will be allowed to leave school before the end of the school day unless prior notification has been received by the school.  Children will only be allowed to leave school early when collected by a responsible adult at the prearranged time.



The school has a legal obligation to register the children twice a day.  This provides an orderly start to the school session and helps to ensure the safety of all pupils.  Registration is taken at the beginning of the morning and afternoon sessions.


Each morning, registers will open at 8.40am. Children arriving after this time will be asked to enter school via the front office.  Here their attendance and arrival time will be recorded, children arriving after 8.40am will receive a late mark.  To ensure the children’s safety, registration will also take place following the lunchtime break.


After School Clubs

Registers are provided for all after school activities.  Registers will be taken at the start of each session and returned to the school office when completed.  Here they will be checked against the class registers by the office manager to ensure all children are present.  If any child is missing without explanation, parents will be contacted immediately.


Authorised/Unauthorised Absence

All absences must be explained by a parent before 9am on the day of absence.  The school will then decide whether or not it will authorise the absence.


Absence from school may be authorized if it is for the following reasons:

  • sickness
  • unavoidable medical/dental appointments
  • days of religious observance
  • exceptional family circumstances, such as a bereavement


Absence from school will not be authorized for:

  • shopping
  • looking after brothers, sisters or unwell parents
  • birthdays


Although the school will consider authorizing medical and dental appointments, it is important to stress the importance of striving to make such appointments out of school hours.


Procedures for Following up Absence/Lateness

To ensure the safety of all children, the school operates a first day of absence contact procedure.  In the event that a child is recorded as absent at morning registration, unless a message explaining the absence has been received, the Office Manager will attempt to contact the pupil’s parent/carer by text after 9.30 on that day. If they fail to respond, this is followed up by a telephone call.


If a child is absent without explanation, the Headteacher will write to parents asking for a reason for the absence.  The school will then decide if the absence will be authorised or unauthorised.  If no explanation is received the absence will be recorded as unauthorised.


Should a pupil be persistently late, the Headteacher will write to the parents informing them of the situation and highlighting the importance of punctuality.  When a pupil is persistently late or absent without good reason and the school’s efforts to effect improvement have been unsuccessful, it may be necessary to refer the matter to the Education Social Worker.


Strategies for Promoting Attendance/Punctuality

The school believes that all pupils are more likely to attend regularly if the curriculum is interesting and relevant.  We will therefore regularly review and develop the curriculum to meet the needs of all pupils.


Outstanding attendance is celebrated each term.  Children with 100% attendance receive a certificate at the end of each term.  This is presented in assembly.


The school administrator will provide information on all pupils’ attendance at the end of each half term.  Parents of pupils whose attendance falls below 90% will be notified and informed of the importance of good attendance.


When necessary, the school’s Education Social Worker will be contacted in order to identify and support those pupils whose attendance/punctuality is a source of concern.


Collection of Attendance Data

Each term the following data will be collected and analysed in order to assess performance and trends:

  • whole school attendance rates
  • numbers and proportion of persistent absentee pupils
  • rates of unauthorised absence

Each half-term a range of attendance data will be analysed by Key Stage leaders in order to identify trends and patterns and to link attendance with attainment.


Policy reviewed: October 2011          Review date: October 2012