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Attendance Matters

Did you know that your child's attendance and punctuality is monitored daily by the school and the Local Authority?  The impact on your child's progress and attainment is affected by the time they spend at school learning.  

A child with 90% of attendance over the year is classed as being persistently absent by the DFE.  This means they have missed the equivalent of an afternoon a week over the school year!  

The school follows DFE guidance on persistently absent children and unauthorised absences.   

William Lilley believes that regular attendance at school is vital for children to be successful  

This year our aim is to support parents to achieve a minimum of 97% attendance for all children!

 You can help by ensuring your child comes to school on time and by not taking any holidays in term time apart from in exceptional circumstances.


Why is it so important to attend school?

  • Gives your child the best possible start in life.
  • Your child is able to keep up with their work.     Children who are late or absent from school frequently develop large gaps in their learning which will impact on their progress, their   ability to develop at the same rate as their peers and meet expectations for their age.
  • .Helps develop friendship and social skills.
  • Helps develop friendships and social skills.


When does my child need to arrive at school?

 The school gates are opened at 8.45am. The bell will sound at 9.00 to indicate the start of the school day and teachers will collect children. The doors will close at 9.05am.


What happens if my child is late?

 If you arrive after 9.05am you must enter the school via the school office to be registered.

If your child arrives between 9.05 am - 9.10am they will be marked late.

Registers close at 9.20am. If your child arrives after 9.20m they will receive an unauthorised absence mark.

Where children arrive after registers close at 9.20am parents & carers are expected to explain the reasons for lateness.

Persistent lateness can ……

  • Cause embarrassment to the child.
  • Impact upon the child’s learning and development.
  • Make it harder for the child to settle.
  • Cause disruption to the rest of the class.

 Exceptional Circumstances

 Head Teachers will not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.  

If you have exceptional circumstances please complete a Leave of Absence Request Form (available from the school office).


What happens if my child is absent?

 Unplanned absences:

  • Inform the school before 9.20am on the morning of the first day of absence.
  • Keep the school informed if the absence is to continue.
  • The school operates a First Day Response and will telephone and/or text families where   children have failed to attend school in time for morning registration.
  • Children’s attendance and punctuality is recorded daily and is shared with the Head Teacher on a weekly basis.
  • A written explanation of your child’s absence may be required on return to school. If we do not receive a satisfactory explanation we will not authorise the absence.
  • An attendance and lateness record is kept on individual pupils’ reports and will be passed on to future schools as necessary.
  • We will send letters home if your child’s attendance is becoming a concern.

Planned absences:

Where possible, organise authorised absences well in advance.


Medical Appointments

Please try to arrange medical appointments during holiday times or out of school hours. If you cannot make doctor or dentist appointments out of school hours, wherever possible the child should come to school before the appointment and return to school afterwards.


Religious Observance

If you wish to take your child out of school for a religious observance please inform the school.


Authorised Absences

William Lilley can only authorise any absences in the following circumstances:

Genuine illness.

Dental/medical appointments (should be made out of school hours where possible).

Close Family bereavement.

Recognised religious observance.


What is NOT acceptable?

Caring for a parent or sibling

Day trips


Bad weather

Family holidays will not be authorised

This is not a exhaustive list


How is good attendance rewarded?

The main reward for regular and punctual attendance is that continuity and         progression in learning are ensured.

At William Lilley we celebrate good   attendance through a termly reward assembly. We present certificates for:

100% attendance         Gold

99% attendance       Silver

97-98% attendance         Bronze

We will message parents through Groupcall thanking them for their continued support and sharing their half termly achievements.

Prizes will also be presented to children who have achieved 100% attendance all year. 


What is the law regarding attendance?

Children of compulsory school age must, by law, receive a full time education.

Each person with day to day parental responsibility could be taken to court and fined for each child who is not attending school regularly or who is persistently late.

The Education Act 1996 states that all pupils should attend school regularly and punctually. ‘If a child of compulsory school age, who is a registered pupil at a school fails to attend regularly at the school, his parent is guilty of an offence.’

Attending 90% of the time or less will have a serious effect on learning.

One day’s absence every two weeks will give 90% attendance.

Up to the age of 16, 90% attendance will mean losing over a year of school - more than half a year during their time in primary school.


What support is available?

The school endeavours to create an atmosphere where pupils are willing and enthusiastic attenders. If your child is trying to avoid coming to school what should you do?

Contact a member of staff immediately to discuss your worries. Your child could be avoiding school for a number of reasons:

Difficulties with school work

Friendship problems

Family difficulties

Each school has a named Education Welfare Officer assigned to them who is employed by the local authority to support families to help resolve problems that may prevent children from receiving a full time education.


William Lilley School Attendance Challenge

Each half term we'll publish our whole school attendance percentages, along with a class by class breakdown... See how your child's class is getting on!