Skip to content ↓

Singlewell Primary School

Absences during term time

Changes to the School Attendance Policy

As you may have seen in the media, the government will be implementing changes to school attendance to reinforce the parental responsibility and children’s access to life chances. With this in mind we are updating our own school policy to comply with the new guidance.

We know that the vast majority of our parents appreciate the progress, well-being and wider life opportunities that good attendance brings. The children have been very proud of their attendance records in the past and we are always grateful for your support in this. We would like to remind you of our existing attendance requirements and share with you the new ones.

  • The National expected percentage level of attendance is 96%, this allows for normal childhood illness. You can compare your child’s attendance rate with this figure. If your child is unwell you should inform the school on the first morning of absence either via telephone, we do have an answerphone for reporting illness, or by email via
  • The School gates open at 8.40am and close at 8.55am for the register to be takenChildren must be in school by 8.55am after this time children will be marked as late and must enter the school using the front gate only accompanied by an adult and come in via the Office in order to register their attendance. If a child arrives later than 30 minutes after the 8.55am start then the attendance will be marked as unauthorised for the morning session. Persistent lateness could result in a fine from the local authority in the form of a Penalty Notice.
  • A Penalty Notice is also used for persistent unauthorised days and holidays.
  • Penalty Notices are issued to each parent of each child including step parents and the amount of the penalty will be £120 each to be paid within 28 days, reduced to £60 if paid within 21 days. Failure to pay the penalty in full at the end of the 28 days period may result in prosecution by the Attendance Service.
  • Unfortunately from September the school will NOT be able to authorise any holidays in term time. Permission for absence from school can only be granted in exceptional circumstances and this no longer includes holidays. Absence cannot be authorised retrospectively. Any holidays taken could result in a fine being issued by the local authority in the form of a Penalty Notice. If your child is reported as unwell and it is suspected they are on holiday we will be required to report this also. Any other absences due to days off for birthdays, trips to the beach etc are deemed to be parentally condoned truancy.
  • In order for us to support you in overcoming any barriers to attendance we can offer a referral to the school nursing team or a meeting in the school with a member of the leadership team/SENCO to discuss your child’s individual needs and put support measures in place.
  • Please do not put your child in the difficult position of not being able to be truthful about their absence. We do talk to the children and they are always very honest and keen to tell their classmates their news.

We appreciate that there are several important changes and these decisions have been taken in consultation with the Inclusion and Attendance Service.

These changes will come into effect from September 2022.