Reporting an Absence

Encouraging regular school attendance is one of the most powerful ways you can prepare your child for success – both in school and in life.

When you make school attendance a priority, you help your child get better grades, develop healthy life habits, avoid dangerous behaviour and have a better chance of succeeding at school.

Research supports that there is a clear correlation between students’ attendance being high and the students reaching their full potential. Students’ grades and reading skills often improve, which enables them to gain confidence, gain a greater feel of belonging, develop important social skills and friendships, and are significantly more likely to be successful and happy.

The importance of excellent attendance

The school has a statutory responsibility to ensure that every child on-roll is safe by recording their daily attendance at morning and afternoon registration and monitoring their physical and emotional well-being during the day.

All children have the right to access education every day of the academic year. This enables them to engage, progress and achieve in all aspects of school life. Positive life outcomes are fundamentally linked to excellent attendance and punctuality.

All parents or carers have a legal duty to ensure that their children attend school regularly and arrive on time. It is an offence in law to permit absence without good reason and may result in prosecution under the Anti – Social Behaviour Act 2003 and under Section 444 of the Education Act 1996.

Students regularly have assemblies reiterating the expectations and importance of aiming for 100% attendance each week, arriving to school by 8:25am every day, being punctual to and remaining in all lessons for the entirety. Those students who arrive after 8:25am will have a loss of personal time of 30 minutes after school.

Students have been reminded that truancy is defined as:

  • Not attending a lesson
  • Arriving over ten minutes late without a valid reason 
  • Leaving a lesson without permission

 Those found truanting will have a loss of personal time on the following evening consisting of 45 minutes after school.

Reporting an absence

Attendance at school is vital for the progress of your child, however we also understand that at times students can become ill. If your child is ill with something potentially contagious, please keep them at home. However where your child could still attend school please send them in and make their Head of House aware that they are not feeling 100%, we can then do regular checks on them and support them throughout the day. This will not only further improve their attendance but also ensure that they are not missing vital elements of their education, to enable them on their journey to reach their full potential. 

To record your child’s absence, please do so in one of the two possible ways stated below:

  1. Call 01322 339642 for the registration team before 8:25am. 
  2. Email the registration email address on  

Details required are:

  • Full name of your child
  • Reason as to why they are absent 
  • When you feel they will be return
  • Evidence or other information as to how we can support their attendance if necessary

Please do not record an absence via the main reception phone line or by emailing a different member of staff separately, but to copy in any other relevant members of staff that you feel may also need to be made aware. 

If the school has not been notified for the reason of absence by midday the absence will be unauthorised and will affect your child’s attendance figures.

Continuous absence

If after 3 days of absence, your child has not been seen and contact has not been made with the school, we will make all reasonable enquiries to establish contact with parents/carers and the child, including making enquiries to known friends and wider family. In the event of an absence of three or more days without contact from the family, a home visit will be made to ascertain the safety and well- being of the child and in addition to the reason for absence from school.

Ten days absence

We have a legal duty to report the absence of any student who is absent without an explanation for 10 consecutive days. If the child is not seen and contact has not been established with the named parent/carer then the local authority is notified that the child is at risk of being missing from education (CME). The Education Welfare Officer will visit the last known address and alert key services to locate the child.

Frequent / Persistent absence problems

We want to avoid absence wherever possible. If there are any issues preventing attendance please communicate this with us. When absence first becomes a concern we will invite you in for a meeting with the school to put an action plan in place to improve attendance.

If attendance does not improve we will involve the Bexley Education Welfare Service for further support.

Attendance: Every day matters!

Good attendance at school is essential for a child’s education and establishes a positive working ethos early in life. It has been proven by DfE studies that students who are absent from school do not reach their full potential when measured against their target grades and those that have a higher attendance percentage. Parents should bear this in mind when allowing their child to stay at home.

Attendance 96% or above
82% achieved five 9 – 4 Grades

Attendance 94% or above
62% achieved five 9 – 4 Grades

Attendance 90% or above
52% achieved five 9 – 4 Grades

Attendance 80% or above
36% achieved five 9 – 4 Grades

Attendance 70% or above
18% achieved five 9 – 4 Grades

Removing a student from the school roll

If parents/carers decide to transfer their child to another school, they should advise the registration team, HOH and SSM, as a matter of priority, providing all necessary details, including any new address (if relevant) and the details of the school that the child is transferring to.  When in the process of a school transfer the child must continue to attend Leigh Academy Bexley until a start date has been agreed with the new school.

If the school does not receive this information and a child stops attending, he or she becomes a ‘Child Missing Education’ (CME). Any child in this category is reported to the Child Missing Education Officer at the Local Authority, who will follow up the matter under safeguarding legislation.

Elective Home Education (EHE)

If parents or carers take the dedicated decision to educate a child at home, they must tell the school of this in writing – this letter or email should be addressed to the Principal and include the date of decision to home educate and a brief explanation of the reasons for EHE.

Once this letter is received, the school will remove the student from the school roll and advise the Elective Home Education Officer of the Local Authority, who will make contact with parents or carers.

If an EHE request letter or email is not received, the student remains on the school roll and action may be undertaken following irregular or non-school attendance procedures, again this could lead to prosecution or an instant fine under the Anti – Social Behaviour Act 2003 and under Section 444 of the Education Act 1996.