St Matthew's C of E

Primary School

Work TogetherAim HighShine Bright

Attendance & Punctuality

Attendance Policy & Procedures (COVID Addendum to follow)

In order for children to reap the full benefits of what our school has to offer them, high levels of attendance and punctuality are essential and important for children to ensure continuity of learning, establish a good work ethic and promote a sense of responsibility and a serious commitment to school.


Even one day missed from school without very good reason is one too many.

Children who are absent for substantial parts of their education fall behind and struggle to catch up.  

Persistent absence is a serious problem. Much of the work children miss when they are off school is never made up, leaving them at a considerable disadvantage to their peers. There is clear evidence of a link between poor attendance at school and low levels of achievement:


in 2011:-

  • Of pupils who miss more than 50% of school, only 3% manage to achieve five A* to Cs, including English and maths
  • Of pupils who miss between 10% and 20% of school, only 35% manage to achieve five A* to C GCSEs, including English and maths
  • Of pupils who miss less than 5% of school, 73% achieve 5 A* to Cs, including English and maths

Figures were also released showing the numbers of pupils who miss 12.5, 10 and 5% of lessons.


In 2014 the National Curriculum changed, making it even more demanding and a challenging for teachers teaching the curriculum and your children learning it.  This means that good attendance at school is vital.


The Legal Framework: The Law relating to attendance;

Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 states that, "The parent of every child of compulsory school age shall cause him / her to receive efficient full time education suitable:-  (a) to age, ability and aptitude and (b) to any special educational needs he/ she may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise’.


The Law Relating to Safeguarding;

Section 175 of the Education Act 2002    places a duty on local authorities and    governing bodies to have regard to        guidance issued by the Secretary of State with regard to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and students under the age of 18.


Holidays in term time

Amendments have been made to the 2006 regulations in the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment)  Regulations 2013.   Amendments to the regulations remove references to family holiday and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days.


The amendments make clear that head teachers may not grant any leave of         absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. We define ‘exceptional circumstances’ as an event or problem you did not expect.

Parents will need to complete an ‘Exceptional Circumstances Form’ with the Headteacher (or representative) if              requesting leave of absence. Please refer to our  Attendance Policy and Procedures for     further information.


Persons responsible for writing the policy, the Head Teacher, Mrs Costello Mrs McClellan and Mrs Watson

Governors with responsibility for attendance:  Mr Brian Jamson  & Mrs Linda Buckley

Attendance administration: Mrs Sarah Kedward

Attendance & Welfare: Mrs Claire Watson



· Ensure the safeguarding, child protection and welfare of all pupils.

· Improve pupils’ achievement by ensuring high levels of attendance and punctuality.

· Achieve an attendance for all children that is above   National Average, apart from those with chronic health issues. 

· Create an ethos in which good attendance and punctuality are recognised as the norm and seen to be valued by the school.

· Raise awareness of parents, carers and pupils of the importance of uninterrupted attendance and punctuality at every stage of a child’s education.

· Ensure that our policy applies to Reception aged children in order to promote good habits at an early age.

· Work in partnership with pupils, parents and staff so that all pupils realise their potential, unhindered by unnecessary absence.

· Promote a positive and welcoming atmosphere in which pupils feel safe, secure, and valued, and encourage in pupils a sense of their own responsibility.

· Establish a pattern of monitoring attendance and ensure consistency in recognising achievement and dealing with difficulties.

· Recognise the key role of all staff, but especially class teachers, in promoting good attendance.

· Provide effective strategies for early intervention to ensure pupils are not deprived of their educational opportunities through non-attendance or lateness.



· Ensure your child attends school regularly.

 · Report your child’s absence before 8.45am; in person, by telephone or by email

 · Ensure your child is not late for school. Doors are opened at 8:45 am and are closed at 09.00 am.

 · Do not take holidays during term time. These will not be authorised.

 · Do not take your child out of school for non-urgent matters.

 · Ensure that medical appointments cause the minimum of disruption and are scheduled out-side school hours where possible.

 · Do not allow your child to be absent for a whole morning/afternoon when their medical appointment is only a short, local one.



  • We will mark the registers daily between 8.50am and 9.00am then at 1:00.

· Information from the registers will be entered into the school’s information management system so we can check attendance.

· We will close attendance registers at 9:10 am.

· The Office staff will telephone parents/ carers to ascertain reasons for non-attendance. This could be followed by a parent mail message asking for contact to be made. We will continue to try to contact via telephone until 10.30 am. If we still have no reasoning for absence a home visit will be carried out in accordance with our first day response procedure.

· We will report attendance figures to parents on a half termly basis via letter. The report will include any monitoring period and action by governors.

· Overall attendance figures will be shared with the children in assembly, on the school website and at Full Governing Body meetings.

· We will track attendance figures as well as persistent lateness. We will host attendance panel meetings in order to provide support or Early Help to families.

· We will award a cup and certificate to the class with the highest weekly attendance. They will enjoy an  extended playtime.

· We will award pupils with a certificate for 100% attendance in a term.

· All staff will follow our Attendance Policy and procedures, actively encouraging school attendance.

· To adhere to the Children’s services school enforcement policy and DFE School attendance statutory guidance and departmental advice.


One of the main aims in the school’s mission statement is to educate for life and for true citizenship.  Consistent adherence to the content of this policy will ensure that our children become responsible, reliable individuals well equipped for the world of work that awaits them beyond school.

Guidance on Infection Control in Schools