Good attendance is directly related to a child’s enjoyment and achievement at school and is vital to promote successful learning.

We strive to provide a welcoming and caring environment where all members of our school community feel wanted and secure.

All staff take responsibility for welcoming pupils into school and into the classroom every day.

Persistent or long-term absence has a negative impact on all areas of school life, not just academic achievement but also on the development of key skills and friendships. Interrupted attendance makes teaching and learning difficult for all pupils and can limit pupil achievements. At Christ Church, we place a high value on maintaining high levels of attendance. We work closely with parents and carers to make this happen for every pupil.

It is really important that your child attends school regularly and it is vital that we work together to ensure that your child arrives on time, every day.

If your child has an appointment to attend during school time e.g. doctor, dentist, we will now need proof (a letter or text confirming the appointment) when you collect your child. Otherwise, this will be put down as an unauthorised absence on your child’s record.

If your child’s attendance goes below 90%, we do have to report this to the Educational Welfare Officer and you could receive a fine.

As you are aware, the Department of Education (DfE) made important changes to the law in 2013 for families wanting to request leave of absence in term time. The changes made it clear that Head Teachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time, unless they are exceptional circumstances.

We have been told by Staffordshire County Council that they are now issuing fines for families taking holidays during term time. This can be as little as one day of absence if it is not seen as an exceptional circumstance or illness.

As a Staffordshire school, we are now legally required to send Staffordshire County Council any applications of unauthorised absence that we receive into school. We ask that you understand that it is not a school decision whether or not to fine parents. This is the responsibility of Staffordshire County Council.

The penalty notice fine would be:

  • £60 per parent, per child if paid within 21 days, rising to
  • £120 per parent, per child if paid between 21-28 days
  • If the fine is not paid within 28 days, you may be prosecuted under S444.1 of the Education Act 1996.

I must advise you that if the prosecution takes place, the maximum fine is £1000 per parent, per child. This reflects the seriousness of unauthorised absence from school. I am sure that you understand that our key priority is to ensure that your child is as successful as possible and gains maximum benefits from their educational experience.

Medical appointments:

Every effort should be made to arrange medical appointments outside of school hours.  If it is necessary for your child to be out of school for this reason, then the amount of time should be minimal and medical proof should be provided. So that your child doesn’t miss out on their learning, we suggest that they attend school either before or after their appointment if appropriate.

We are aware that illness can happen and that children might need time to recover. The school office should be informed before 8.30am on the first day of your child’s absence due to illness and then each morning (before 8.30am) until they return back to school.  For children whose attendance becomes of concern because of the amount of illness/medical appointments etc, then school will write advising the Parents/Carers that the Head Teacher will no longer authorise any such absences unless supported by medical evidence.

Holidays and leaves of absence:

Holidays or other reasons for leave of absences in term time will not be authorised unless there are exceptional circumstances. Parents are asked to complete a leave of absence form to inform school that they wish to take their child out of school during time.

Unauthorised absences:

If your child has multiple unauthorised absences, then a referral will be made to the Education Welfare Officer (EWO). Unauthorised absences may result in parents/carers being issued with a fine. If you have any questions or concerns regarding attendance, please contact the school office.