The importance of coming to school
Coming to school every day is very important for your child.
Research has shown that children with poor attendance:
Children who miss school miss lessons. These lessons are not repeated, so children will have gaps in their learning. Additionally, often each day’s lessons build upon those of the previous day – if a child misses a lesson they can miss the foundation to subsequent lessons. Children could begin to struggle and achieve less.
Attendance is related to achievement:
The better the attendance, the better the achievement
If your child is away from school for more than 9 days a year they will not have ‘Good’ attendance. They will have missed 45 lessons!
This means your child can only miss one day every half-term to get good attendance.
It is important from an early age to get into the habit of attending school!
Additionally, while children are absent, friendship groups are formed within school and children can feel left out when they return.
The NI Department of Education gives the following key reasons why it’s important for children to attend school:
By keeping a child out of school we are stopping them experiencing and gaining these important things.
Young people who regularly miss school without good reason are more likely to become isolated from their friends, to underachieve in examinations and/or become involved in anti-social behaviour.
A child’s education is very important, so the law is strong when it comes to helping a child receive it. According to the Government,<3> ‘local councils and schools can use various legal powers if your child is missing school without a good reason’:
Please note, ‘you can be given one or more of these orders but the council doesn’t have to do this before prosecuting you’.
A parenting order ‘means you have to go to parenting classes. You’ll also have to do what the court says to improve your child’s school attendance’.
‘If the council thinks you need support getting your child to go to school but you’re not co-operating, they can apply to a court for an Education Supervision Order. A supervisor will be appointed to help you get your child into education. The local council can do this instead of prosecuting you, or as well’.
‘You’ll get a School Attendance Order if the local council thinks your child isn’t getting an education’. ‘The order will require you to send your child to a specific school. If you don’t, you may be prosecuted’.
‘Instead of being prosecuted, you can be given a penalty notice. The penalty is £60, rising to £120 if paid after 21 days but within 28 days. If you don’t pay the fine you may be prosecuted’.
In this context, being prosecuted means getting ‘a fine of up to £2,500, a community order or a jail sentence up to 3 months. The court also gives you a Parenting Order’.
Of course, it’s better to be late to school than to not arrive at all. However, we always encourage punctuality at school. Not only is it a good habit to learn from an early age (it will help them when they come to have a job later in life), but being on time is also important for a child because:
In fact, by regularly arriving late, children can miss a lot of learning time!
Being on time is important!
Some other reasons being late is a bad thing include:<4>
So what can a parent do to help their child punctually attend school every day? Here are some ideas:<5>
1. Last two bullet points taken from Why is high attendance important to my child’s education?
Also see Every School Day Counts > Why Does Attendance Matter? (US); Every Day Counts: Primary School Attendance (Aus.); Truancy (Walsall Council)
Holidays during term-timeNottinghamshire County Council
Attendance data 2018-19
Overall school attendance:
Pupil Premium children:
Non Pupil Premium: