Attendance and Opening Times


The official school opening times are 8.00 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. Outside this time, responsibility for students is only accepted if they are involved in events directly supervised by staff. The dining Hall is open for breakfast from 8.00 a.m. each morning.


We ask that parents contact the school by telephone on the first day of absence with an indication of length of absence if possible. Unless you have discussed the absence with a member of staff, you must phone at the start of each subsequent day of absence until your child is back in school. Following absence we expect pupils to bring a note from home explaining why they have been away. This should be addressed to the form tutor. Depending on the length of the absence or on your child’s attendance percentage, we may request medical evidence in order to mark the absence as Authorised Illness. Either during / after the absence, students must speak with teachers and / or classmates to catch up on work they have missed. If appropriate, work to be done at home can be arranged for long-term absentees.


Pupils are expected to be in school by 8.30 a.m. and in their classrooms ready to start work at 8.40 a.m. If pupils arrive after this time they must sign in at the Reception desk in the main entrance.


From the start of this academic year,  if your child has a medical appointment first thing in the morning and arrives in school before 9.45 they will receive a ‘Present’ mark for that AM session (with a comment added to the register stating when they signed in). In order for us to do this your child must show a card or letter from the practice/clinic/surgery stating the date and time of the appointment. This will mean that the appointment does not adversely affect your child’s attendance figure.


We actively discourage pupils from taking holidays during term time. Requests must be made via ‘Leave of Absence Request’ forms which are available from the main school office, or by clicking on the links below. All holiday leave will be recorded as unauthorised unless there are very exceptional circumstances. Parents will be notified by letter within 2 weeks if the absence is to be recorded as authorised.


The MECE can issue a Penalty Notice for a leave of absence taken during term time irrespective of the student’s current attendance if the absence lasts for 14 sessions (7 consecutive days) or more. The Penalty Notice is for £120 (if paid within 28 days) or £60 (if paid within 21 days) to each parent for each child taken out of school.


Year Achievement Coordinators work closely with our School Inclusion Officer (Mrs Brookes) to monitor absence and, when necessary, take steps to address concerns. In line with DfE guidance, we expect all students to have attendance of at least 96%. Attendance is calculated cumulatively across the school year and any student who has attendance of less than 90% at any point in the year will be classed as a Persistent Absentee.


We will work with students and parents where attendance is consistently less than 90% to ensure that this improves. We use a range of strategies including: phone communication to discuss concerns; home visits; school-based Attendance Meetings; student rewards to increase motivation to attend. If attendance does not improve following staged intervention and support then we will refer cases to the Missing Education and Child Employment service (MECE – formerly known as Education Welfare Service) who can call a formal School Attendance Meeting and can take court action if necessary. 


It is standard practice that, for any students with attendance of less than 90%, absence will only be marked as authorised illness if we receive medical evidence to support this. GP appointment cards can be used to authorise up to two days of absence. For longer absences, a GP letter is necessary.

85 to 90 change letter | PDF

Leave of Absence Request Form | PDF