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Attendance Matters


The impact on your child's progress and attainment is affected by the time they spend at school learning.  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.




Did you know that your child's attendance and punctuality is monitored daily by the school and the Local Authority?  


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.  


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.




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





When does my child need to arrive at school?


The school gates are opened at 8.30am. The children are expected to be on site by 8.50am. The bell will sound at 9.00am to indicate the start of the school day and teachers will collect children. The doors will close at 9.05am.


By law, schools must take a morning and afternoon register and record the the attendance or absence of every pupil. Morning registration begins at 9.00am and closes at 9.10am.


Any child arriving after 9.10am will be monitored as late to school.


Any child arriving after morning registration has closed (after 9.10am and before 9.30am) will be registered as late to school.


Whole school registration closes at 9.30am and after this lateness will be recorded as an unauthorised absence.


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.




What happens if my child is absent?


Exceptional Circumstances

Head Teachers will not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Parents are asked to inform the school well in advance of any known future absence and through a Leave of Absence Request Form (available from the School Office or by clicking on the link below).


Unplanned absences

In all cases of unplanned absence the parents/carers should:

  • Only keep your child away from school if really necessary, the school will always call and send home an unwell child,
  • Let the school know by telephone, answer machine, text or email at the earliest opportunity (and, where possible, by 9.30am) to let us know why your child is gonig to be absent. 
  • Keep the school informed if the absence is to continue.
  • The school operates a First Day Response and will make every effor to contact 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.


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.

There are a number of attendance awards that are received which include:

  • Class Register Of the Week (CROW) award for the best attending class that week - children receive the Joe the Crow puppet to keep in their class,
  • Class attendance is plotted on a weekly CROW chart,
  • Joe the Crow visits the assembly with a reward bag if the class has achieved 100% attendance that week,
  • Names of children who have achieved 100% attendance over the week will be entered into the end of term raffle - our prizes have included a bike, a scooter and a go-kart,
  • Termly reward certificates are presented for any child with attendance above 97%,
  • Prizes are presented to children with 100% attendance all year




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 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.



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