Why school attendance matters

Missing a few days of school here and there may not seem huge, but research shows that it has a significant impact on children’s learning. Children who miss a substantial amount of school can fall behind their peers, and struggle to catch up.

  • Every child has a right to education and to have the best possible life chances. By attending school daily and on time they learn the importance of commitment and being punctual, a life skill that will serve them well as they grow into the next generation of working citizens.
  • It is hard to catch up enough on the work that is missed due to absence, therefore it will be hard for children to achieve their best results if there are gaps in their learning.
  • Not being at school regularly also has a negative effect on the social aspects of school. It is hard for children to build and maintain good friendships if they are not in school regularly
  • School is open from 8:35am to 8:55am to ensure that children have the opportunity to be in school on time. 5 minutes late each day can have an accumlative impact on your child's education

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We encourage parents and carers to send their children to school whenever possible, however if they have sickness or diarrhoea, please keep them at home for 48 hours of being symptom free. If a child is off for a week, we would expect them to have seen a doctor and may ask for evidence of an appointment or medicine prescription. Medications can be administered in school to enable children to attend, please come to the school office to arrange this.

If your child is unwell, you must call the school office by 9.00am to notify us of their absence.

If we do not have regular contact from parents of an absent child, this will become a safeguarding issue.  We will call all contacts on our lists and we may carry out a home visit for a welfare check.

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You are encouraged to make children’s medical appointments outside of school hours, if possible. If this is not possible, we ask that parents provide the school with evidence of appointments (at least 48 hours notice where possible) in order that we can discuss with you.

Holidays and absence

According to the law, parents do not have an automatic right to take their child out of school during term time as it is considered that any absence from school will disrupt your child’s learning.  Any leave that is taken without the Headteacher’s permission may result in a penalty notice of up to £120 per parent, per child. If you wish to apply for a leave of absence for your child, please complete a Leave of Absence Form and return to the school office at least 7 days before the first day of absence

What attendance can be authorised?

In exceptional circumstances Lunt’s Heath Primary School will consider a request for leave of absence for one period of absence during the academic year.

The Headteacher or person designated by the Headteacher will determine what are considered to be exceptional circumstances. 

The following may be examples of exceptional circumstances:

  • To allow a pupil to return to their country of origin for family, religious or cultural reasons.
  • To partake in religious festivals.
  • A family member is seriously ill.
  • Leave of absence for children of serving members of the Armed Forces.
  • Attendance at an examination, for example a music examination.
  • Attendance at an elite sporting competition

What cannot be authorised?

The following examples are deemed not to be exceptional circumstances:

  • A cost differential.
  • One or both parent(s) / carer(s) having inflexible leave allocation throughout the year including when this has been confirmed by their employer.
  • A surprise holiday booked as a gift.
  • Attendance or participation of a family wedding, including that of the child’s parents.
  • A new holiday booking as a result of a previous cancellation irrespective of the reason provided.
  • Attendance of grassroots / community club tours, e.g. sporting or music.

Please see 'Leave of Absence Policy' below for more details.

How do we celebrate Attendance?

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ON TIME, IN SCHOOL Weekly and Half termly attendnce winners, each having prizes including extra playtimes and half day parties!

Names on the HT Award Board in the hall

Weekly newsletter updates

Headteacher Awards for children who have tried so hard to gain maximum attendance.


At Lunt's Heath, we want to celebrate the attendance of every individual while celebrating collective achievements too.  We understand there may be valid reasons why a child cannot attend school and always bear this in mind when monitoring attendance.

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Lunt's Heath Primary School

Wedgewood Drive, Widnes, Cheshire, WA8 9RJ