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Attendance & Leave of Absence

The law on school attendance and right to a full-time education

9. The law entitles every child of compulsory school age to an efficient, full-time education suitable to their age, aptitude, and any special educational need they may have. It is the legal responsibility of every parent to make sure their child receives that education either by attendance at a school or by education otherwise than at a school.

10. Where parents decide to have their child registered at school, they have an additional legal duty to ensure their child attends that school regularly. This means their child must attend every day that the school is open, except in a small number of allowable circumstances such as being too ill to attend or being given permission for an absence in advance from the school. 

11. This is essential for pupils to get the most out of their school experience, including their attainment, wellbeing, and wider life chances. The pupils with the highest attainment at the end of key stage 2 and key stage 4 have higher rates of attendance over the key stage compared to those with the lowest attainment. At KS2, pupils not meeting the expected standard in reading, writing and maths had an overall absence rate of 4.7%, compared to 3.5% among those meeting the expected standard.

DfE - Working together to improve school attendance (Sept 2022)


In each class, the teacher takes a register.  The register is taken twice a day.   If your child is late for school after the register has been closed at 8.50am, your child is marked as late after registration.  The Local Authority recognise this as an absent mark.   Sustained lateness can result in prosecution, so we ask parents who are having difficulty with morning routines to speak to the school.

Reporting Absence

At Priestley parents/carers are expected to contact the school office before 8.30 am and advise why their child will not be attending school, and how long they expect their child to be absent.


If parents/carers do not inform the school of their child’s absence a text will be sent out requesting that they contact the school office and advise why their child is not in school. This text will be sent by 9.30am. 

If the school does not receive a reply by 10.30am, it will then attempt to phone the parent.  If the school cannot make contact, other contact phone numbers for the child provided will be attempted.


At this point should the school still have no contact it will be recorded on the school’s safeguarding concern system due to the fact that a legal requirement has not been fulfilled and a child is potentially missing.


This is also the point where the designated safeguarding team at school will consider referring the potential missing child to MASH/ Social Care/Police.


Term Time Holidays

At Priestley Primary School the Governors do not approve any holidays during term time.  Therefore, parents are requested not to take their child on holiday during term time as this has a proven, measurable impact upon their performance.  


If you need to apply for leave, please complete a leave of absence form and return it to school before booking your holiday.

Leave of Absence during Term Time - Guidance Leaflet for Parents

Leave of Absence Request Form 

Guide for Parents on School Attendance

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