The Department for Education expects schools and local authorities to promote good attendance and reduce absences, including persistant absence. This is because we know that missing out on lessons leaves children/young people vulnerable to falling behind. Children/young people with poor attendance tend to achieve less in both primary and secondary schools.
As a school we work incredibly hard to support all children/young people and their families so as to ensure that all children/young people have good attendance.
The Government has recently made amendments to the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006 which came into force on 1st September 2013. These state that Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence for holidays during the term time unless there are exceptional circumstances; in these cases it is the Headteacher who determines the number of days a child can be away from school if leave is granted.
As a consequence of these changes I will no longer be able to approve requests for leave of absence for reasons that are not considered to be special or exceptional such as:
- Availability of cheap holidays and cheap travel arrangements
- Days overlapping with beginning or end of term
Parents needing leave of absence for exceptional circumstances should write to the Headteacher at least two weeks before the anticipated start date. The reason for the request should be given in detail. Requests should be made before the leave is arranged as absences will not be granted retrospectively.
I would like to remind parents that this is Government policy and parents who take their children on holiday without permission will incur unauthorised absences for their child. These remain on the child’s record and will be monitored for further action by the Education Welfare Service. Parents could be issued with a fixed penalty notice and/or court action.
Thank you for your support and understanding