TLC Attendance Policy

Status: Statutory

Job title: Head of Student Welfare

Nominated prime author: Gentian Bolt

Policy to be implemented by: All Staff

Date completed: November 2013

Review period: 3 years

Date approved: 3rd December 2014 (Reviewed Dec 17 but not updated)


The master copy of this policy document is to be kept by the clerk to the Governors who must
ensure that:
1.The Deputy Head , PA to the Head and the prime author all have a copy of the policy.
2.The policy review committee will carry out the review of the policy at the appropriate time.

Tiverton Learning Community

Bampton Church of England Primary School

Bickleigh on Exe CE Primary School

Bolham Primary School

The Castle Primary School

Halberton Primary School

Heathcoat Primary School

Rackenford Primary School

St John’s Catholic Primary School

Tidcombe Primary School

Tiverton High School

Two Moors Primary School

Wilcombe Primary School

In conjunction with Devon Education Welfare Service


Attendance Policy


To promote a joint approach to tackling poor attendance and poor punctuality throughout the
Tiverton Learning Community area.

It is the aim of each school to ensure punctuality and regular attendance which will help to raise
achievement and enable students to realise their full potential.


  1. To provide a consistent message to pupils and parents/carers
  2. To ensure continuity and progression in the learning process.
  3. To ensure that a high standard of punctuality and attendance is achieved and
  4. To provide a safe and secure environment for pupils.

Legal Responsibilities of Parents in Relation to School Attendance (Section 7 Education
Act 1996):

The parent of every child of compulsory school age must ensure that he/she receives efficient,
full-time education suitable to:

  1. his/her age ability and aptitude;
  2. any special educational needs he/she may have;

either by regular attendance at school or otherwise.

For pupils registered at a school, this means that pupils must attend regularly and punctually;
failure to do so may result in their parents committing a criminal offence.


1. Absence can only be authorised by the school for:

a) sickness or other unavoidable cause (solely affecting that child)
b) days set aside for family religious observance
c) where LA school transport has not been provided to a child who is entitled to it
d) other reasons, approved by the school.

2. For all absences, there should normally be formal notification from parents. Only the
Headteacher (or delegated members of staff) can authorise any absence and may
refuse to do so, unless it is felt that the absence is justified by one of the reasons
stated above.

3. There is no automatic entitlement for absence for holidays during term time
(Amendment to the Education [Pupil Registration] [England] Regulation 2006),
except for families serving in the Armed Forces.

4. In cases of unauthorised Term-time holidays, Headteachers should follow the Devon
County Council protocol and apply directly to the Education Welfare Service to
generate a Penalty Notice warning letter (without, necessarily, contacting the
school’s EWO). This should be done by completing Penalty Notice Certificate of
Absence Form and returning it to:
Penalty Notice Officer, EWS, Milford House, Pynes Hill, Business Park, Exeter

5. Schools will liaise closely with parents advising them as early as possible if there are
cases of suspected unauthorised absence, and persistent lateness, or their child’s
attendance falls below 85%.

6. Late arrival should be actively discouraged. Separate registration codes are
required for lateness prior to close of registration and afterwards. It has been
agreed that registers should remain “open” for the first 30 minutes of the morning
and afternoon registration period. At the High school, afternoon registration is ‘open’
for 20 minutes. In circumstances such as bad weather or public transport difficulties,
schools may keep the register open for a longer period. Late arrival during these
periods will be coded as an ‘Authorised Late’ (‘L’).

7. Late arrival after the register is closed is an ‘Unauthorised Absence’ (coded ‘U’)
which could provide grounds for prosecution. Where a pupil arrives after close of
registration with a legitimate reason, the absence should be authorised using the
appropriate code (for example due to an appointment with a doctor).

8. Parents have a responsibility to inform school of late arrival or other absence before
9.30 am on the day; or, for absences of longer than one day, before 9.30 am on the
first day.

9. Where no satisfactory explanation for absences is received, parents will be
contacted by the school.

10. The Education Welfare Officer will be notified in the following circumstances:
– unauthorised absence by a student of more than 10 half-day sessions (in
aggregate) in any one term
– attendance of less than 85% by any pupil
– where action taken at school level has failed to improve attendance/punctuality
for a particular student

11. When a pupil’s attendance falls below 85% and they also have 10 or more
unauthorised absences, unless there are extenuating circumstances, they should be
considered for “Fast-track to Prosecution”.

12. Parents are to inform the school, in writing, if a child is to be removed from a roll.
Details of the new school should be provided, if applicable.

If a child leaves a school to be home educated, then Form EWS 10 must be
completed and returned to:

Georgina Bennet, Windmill House, 21 Ashburton Road, Totnes,TQ9 5JZ.
and to:
Irene Love, Great Moor House, Bittern Road, Sowton Industrial Estate, Exeter, EX2

When a pupil moves from school and no notification has been received from another
school, the ‘old’ school should complete a ‘Children Missing from Education’ form
(S2s) and return it to:

EMS Data Team, ScoMIS Office, Great Moor House, Bittern Road, Sowton Industrial
Estate, Exeter, EX2 7NL

(Where the ‘new’ school is known, as a safeguard, the ‘old’ school should make
contact with the receiving school to alert them to the move).

13. Schools will adopt a multi-agency approach in supporting children and their families
to improve their attendance.

14. For Health and Safety reasons, schools need to be aware of where pupils are,
particularly those leaving or arriving on the premises during a session. An
appropriate recording system will be instigated.

15. Parents’ meetings, and other occasions can be used to stress to all parents the
importance and benefits of regular attendance and punctuality. Advantage will also
be made of regular school to home newsletters etc.