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Attendance and Punctuality


Once your child is registered at a school, the parents or carers are legally responsible for making sure they attend school regularly and punctually. Parents, and those with parental responsibility, are required to ensure that children of compulsory school age receive effective full time education. This means that they are responsible for ensuring that children attend and stay at school unless alternative arrangements for their education are made.


The government guidelines on school attendance


We expect all children at Lessness Heath Primary School to attend every day when the school is open, as long as they are fit enough to do so.


We make our school a safe, happy place for the children to be in, and reward those children whose attendance is very good. We know that absence hinders children’s learning, and so we actively promote and encourage 100% attendance for all our pupils, and discourage all unnecessary absences, including those taken for holidays during school time.


The Governing Body is responsible for making sure the school keeps an attendance register that records which pupils are present at the start of both the morning and the afternoon sessions of the school day. This register will also indicate whether an absence was authorised or unauthorised. The school also has a legal duty to publish its absence figures to parents and to ensure as high a level of attendance as possible.


The following table indicates the impact of absence on your child’s learning and progress, and any action the school is legally required to take.


% AttendanceDays



Impact on ChildPossible School/LA Action
96% – 100%0Perfect!  Giving your child the best chanceChild rewarded
96%10At risk of under achievingPatterns of attendance are investigated in school.
90%20At serious risk of under achievingDiscussion with Education Welfare Officer (EWO)
85%29High level of concernSchool Referral to EWO for immediate action.


Child will be recorded on Persistent Absence return to local authority.

Possible Court action for parents.

80%38Serious concern
75%47Serious Concern –


Not fair for the child.


Absence and lateness


Parents are responsible for informing the school of any absence as soon as possible on the first day of absence by 09.15, either by phone or email. A letter must be addressed to the school office explaining the reason for absence on the child’s return to school for our records. Failure to do so will result in unauthorised absence.


Where a child is late it is recorded at the main gate by a member of the senior leadership team and this is then recorded on our system. Lateness is discouraged. Children miss valuable time if they are late each day, and this will also be monitored.


Authorised Absence


Only the school can authorise a child’s absence. An absence is recorded as authorised when a child has been away from school for a legitimate reason, and the school has received notification from a parent or carer. For example, if a child has been unwell and the parent writes a note or sends an email to explain the reason. In cases where the child’s attendance is below 95%, medical evidence may be requested before the absence will be authorised.


Unauthorised Absence


An absence is recorded as unauthorised when is child is away from school without the permission of the school. The following are examples where absence will be unauthorised:


  • Another member of the family is ill
  • The family have overslept, or had a late night
  • There are problems with uniform or clothing
  • You have forgotten school dates
  • It has snowed and you live within walking distance of the school
  • An annual family event, such as a birthday
  • An outing, e.g. to a theme park
  • You take your child shopping
  • A parent or sibling has a medical or other appointment
  • You have a problem with your car




When a child is absent, the class teacher will record the absence in the register, which is then passed to the school office.


If there is any doubt about the whereabouts of the child the school will try to make contact with the parent as soon as possible in order to check on the safety of the child.


Each child’s attendance record is kept on file, via our computerised registration system. At the end of each week our system produces a profile of attendance for each child. The Headteacher and Office Manager monitor attendance closely for each child.


It is the responsibility of the school governors to monitor overall attendance. They request a termly report from the Headteacher.



The times of the school day are as follows:


Nursery and Reception


08.30Gates open
08.40-8.50Reception children are greeted on the back playground and the gate is opened for Nursery Parents at 8.40am
08.50In Reception the bell is rung and children are escorted into the school
09.00Registers Officially Close – anyone in school after this time will be marked absent for the whole session
12.00Lunch Time
13.15Afternoon Registration
15.10End of the School Day


Key Stage One and Two (Y1-Y6)


08.30Gates open
08.40-08.50The school doors are open and the children make their way to their classrooms for Early morning work and to organise themselves for the day
08.50The bell is rung and the doors are closed
08.50-09.00Any child who comes into school at this time is late
09.00Registers Officially Close – anyone in school after this time will be marked absent for the whole session
15.15End of the School Day


Children are marked present or absent on the attendance register at the beginning of each morning and afternoon session. Absences are marked as authorised or unauthorised. All teachers in school operate the same system, so the registers are consistent. Registers are kept accurately as they may be used in evidence in cases where the EWO becomes involved. The EWO is informed of all attendance issues.


The official registration period for our schools is 10 minutes


  • Any child arriving after the Morning Registration time (8.50am) will be recorded as Late.
  • Any child who arrives after the registers are officially closed in the morning (9.00am) will be marked as having anUnauthorised Absence for that session.
  • The same policy applies to the afternoon session.

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