School attendance

If you want to give your child the best possible start in life and make sure they make the most of their education they must not miss out on going to school. School attendance is not only important for your child but if you don't follow the rules on attendance you could be prosecuted.

School attendance matters

You must provide your child’s school with a reason if they are not going in. If your child misses school for an unacceptable reason you may receive a penalty fine or be prosecuted.

Leave during term time

A holiday or family event is not a good enough reason for your child to miss out on school.

If you take your child out of school and do not have the head teacher’s permission you could receive a fine.

It’s the law that your child attends school

Unauthorised absences may result in prosecution that can lead to:

  • A fine of up to £2,500 per parent per child
  • A Community Order or custodial sentence
  • A criminal record.

The trigger for a fixed penalty notice is 10 sessions of unauthorised absence.

If your child keeps missing out on school you will be sent a warning letter.

If your child’s attendance still does not improve you could receive a fine of:

  • £60 if paid within 21 days
  • £120 if paid between 22 and 28 days

Fines are issued to both parents for each child and must be paid in full, we will not accept part payment of the amount.

If you do not pay the fine this could lead to prosecution.

What should I do if I am having difficulties getting my child to school?

If you are having difficulty getting your child to school or think there may be a reason why your child does not want to go to school, you should always speak to the school.

Arriving late for school

Schools take a register twice a day, first thing in the morning and in the afternoon.

If your child is late and cannot provide an explanation then it may be marked as an unauthorised absence. If you child is late on multiple occasions this could result in legal action.