Any absence from school will have a detrimental effect on a child’s learning and it is the legal duty of the Parent/Carer to ensure that their children attend school. Should your child, for any reason, not be at school we will require an explanation for the absence. We would expect you to telephone the school on the first day of absence by 9:00 a.m. or send an email and a written note when your child returns to school. Should an explanation not be received, the school will investigate to ensure the parent has authorised the absence. 


As with absence, lateness disrupts a child’s schooling and we will require a parental explanation for lateness. The school will investigate all incidents of lateness that have not been adequately explained. Frequent lateness will be reported to Hertfordshire’s Attendance Team. 

Good time keeping means making sure your child is at school and ready to learn, before the start of lessons. 

Did you know? ‚Äď being 15 minutes late each day is the same as missing two weeks of school!¬†

Lost minutes = Lost Learning! 

Every School Day Counts but every minute is equally as important! 

If your child’s attendance or punctuality gives us grounds for concern we will contact you to try and gain your support. However, if the attendance/punctuality continues to be poor we will ask the Hertfordshire’s Attendance Team to help us to see if we can support you in improving this. 


Authorised and Unauthorised Absence. What is the difference? 

Every school, by law, has to register pupils twice a day; first thing in the morning at the start of the school day, and again in the afternoon session. If a pupil fails to attend or arrives late they can be marked as absent for that session. 

If a pupil of compulsory school age is absent, the register must show whether the absence was authorised (acceptable) or unauthorised (where no acceptable reason is given for absence). Only the school can approve the reason for absence. 

Authorised Absences 

Where a pupil is absent due to sickness and is genuinely unable to attend school, then the school, after being informed, may authorise a child’s absence.¬†

It is important that you phone the school or come into the office if your child is going to be absent at the start of the day. You will receive a phone call from the office if you do not inform us as it is our duty to ensure your child is safe. In law only a Headteacher can authorise a pupil’s absence, and may require additional evidence such as a letter from your GP or other medical proof; particularly if your child‚Äôs attendance is already a concern and below 95%.¬†

Unauthorised Absences 

The law states that parent/carer(s) must ensure that their child regularly attends the school where they are registered. Should your child fail to attend school regularly legal action may be taken against you. 

It is a parent’s legal responsibility to ensure that their child, when of statutory school age, accesses education appropriate to age, needs and ability.¬†

Under the terms of the education related provisions of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act, each parent/carer(s) may be issued with a Penalty Notice of £60 if: 

  • You fail to ensure that your child attends school regularly¬†
  • You allow your child to take leave of absence in term time without a school‚Äôs authorisation¬†
  • You fail to return your child to school on an agreed date after a leave of absence¬†
  • Your child persistently arrives late for school after the register is closed¬†

Examples of unauthorised Absence may be if your child does not attend because of: 

  • Going on holiday or travelling abroad¬†
  • Days off for birthdays, shopping trips¬†
  • Feeling tired¬†
  • Bad weather¬†
  • Non urgent appointments¬†
  • Parent unwell and unable to bring them to school¬†
  • Sibling being ill¬†