Attendance, Request for Leave and Penalty Notices
Attendance, Leave of Absence during Term Time and Penalty Notices
Attendance at school is extremely important and being regularly absent will affect your child’s ability to learn and do well. If your child’s school attendance is 90% or below, then your child will be classed as a Persistent Absentee. As a school we are required to closely monitor children’s school attendance and if your child falls into this category I have to make you aware that a referral may be made to the Local Authority or to our Independent Attendance Consultant. We are aware that children can miss school due to unavoidable illness. Please ensure that you communicate the reasons for your child’s absences on the first day of absence. If there are long term attendance difficulties then please discuss this with us so that we may support the situation.
You may be aware of a recent court case which focused national attention on the fining of parents for taking their children on holidays in school term time. As a result of this, the county council are reviewing the rules around unauthorised absence and issuing penalty notices to parents. While the review is ongoing, Headteachers will continue to review all requests for leave in term time and report all unauthorized absences to the county council. It remains the case that Headteachers may only authorise such absences if there are ‘exceptional circumstances’. As a temporary measure when a child has more than 10 days or more unauthorised absences to the county council over two half terms in a row, then a penalty notice may be issued to the parents/carers of that child.
If you have any questions with regards to this, please contact your Local Support Team. Contact details can be found online at www.staffordshire.gov.uk/LST.
Penalty Notice Information
A fine of £60 per parent/carer (per child) if paid within 21 days from the date of issue. If this Penalty is not paid, the amount rises to £120. If after 28 days of the date of issue the £120 is not paid the Local Authority will prosecute you under section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996. This will lead to a hearing in the Magistrates Court and may result in a fine of up to £1000.
We request that any applications for leave of absence are required to be put in writing to the Headteacher at least 2 weeks in advance.
Mr C M Wright
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