Attendance – Guide for Parents

Bristol City Council’s “Education Welfare Service” have produced a leaflet containing important information for Parents – please download this by clicking on the link:

Penalty Notice Information for Parents

Guide for Parents

  • When does my child need to be in school?

School opens for pupils at 9.00am. Your child should be ready in good time for the school transport to ensure that they arrive on time

  • Does the school need letters explaining my child’s absence or will a phone call do?

We would expect a parent to telephone the school on the first day of absence. If you do not phone us, we will try to contact you. This will be followed up with a letter requesting this information if we are unable to contact you.

If we do not receive an explanation, or if the explanation is unsatisfactory, we will not authorise the absence.

  • What reasons will the school accept for absences?
  • Illness
  • Emergency dental/medical appointment
  • Day of religious observance
  • Family bereavement
  • Term time absences for families with exceptional circumstances (see question 6)

Except in the case of illness, you should ask for permission for your child to miss school well in advance, giving full details.

  • What is unacceptable?

The school will not authorise absence for day trips, visiting relatives, shopping or birthdays – unless in exceptional circumstances.

  • Will the school contact me if my child is absent?

The school will try to contact you, if we have not heard from you. This is to ensure your child’s safety as well as their regular school attendance.

If we are concerned about aspects of your child’s attendance or punctuality we will contact you to discuss the best way forward.

  • Can we take term time absences?

If, in exceptional circumstances, you need to request permission for your child to not be in school during term time, you should complete an application form, stating the reason why. The Headteacher has the right to refuse permission having given consideration to: your child’s age, the time of year, overall attendance pattern of your child and the circumstances given.

  • What can I do to encourage my child to attend school?

Make sure your child gets enough sleep and gets up in plenty of time each morning. Ensure that he/she leaves home in the correct clothes and properly equipped. Show your child, by your interest, that you value his/her education.

  • My child is reluctant to come to school. What should I do?

Contact the school to discuss any concerns or worries. It is important that we identify the reason for your child’s reluctance to attend school and work together to resolve the problem.

In some cases you may find it helpful to discuss the circumstances of your child’s difficulties with an Education Welfare Officer. The school may also refer you to an Education Welfare Officer who works with staff and families if difficulties with attendance arise. Please contact the school if you would like the contact details of the Education Welfare Service.

If you would like to request time out of school for your child during term time, you can complete this form which is a Microsoft Word Document:

Term Time Leave of Absence Form