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The children's attendance is of a high priority to us at Knollmead. Research shows that the higher a pupil's overall absence rate, the lower their likely level of attainment at the end of Primary School.

Our whole school attendance continues to be affected greatly by unauthorised holidays that have been taken this year, with 340 days of education lost to unauthorised holiday in 2018-19 alone. To ensure the best possible progress and attainment for the children, through helping to reduce absences and discourage term time holidays, more schools in the local authority have started to issue fixed penalty notices for such unauthorised absences; we are committed to providing the best for the children at Knollmead and so, following consultation with parents on 28th June 2019, this is something that we introduced as of January 2020.

Term Time Exceptional Leave Requests

We discourage all parents from taking their child out of school during term time to take holidays

Taking a child on holiday during term time interrupts the learning of the whole class and the teachers have to spend time helping the children catch up when they return. Therefore parents should arrange holidays during the 13-week school holiday periods.

Holidays taken within the school term (except in exceptional circumstances agreed by the Headteacher) will be deemed as unauthorised absence. The expectation of the Local Authority is that term-time holidays should not be planned or booked as they are likely to lead to the issuing of a penalty notice. Parents/carers who take their children on unauthorised, term-time holidays may be issued with a penalty notice or subject to court proceedings for failing to ensure their child's regular school attendance under section 444 of the Education Act 1996.

Exceptional circumstances does not include:

  • Cheap holiday costs

  • Getting personal paperwork, visas updated (this should be planned into holiday periods)

  • Visiting relatives (this should be planned into holiday periods)

Exceptional circumstances must be:

  • Rare

  • Significant

  • Unavoidable

  • Short

Fixed Penalty Notices Presentation


Working together to improve school attendance

Being in school and having the best attendance possible underpins all the many benefits of school for your child, such as their learning, wellbeing and wider development.

For some children, attending school every day will be harder than for others. This is why schools, and local councils in some cases, are committed to working together with families to solve problems and support your child’s school attendance. The guide linked below covers two areas:
• Parents’ responsibilities for school attendance and what you need to do when your child needs to be absent.
• How schools and local authorities will work with you to support your child’s

Guide for parents on school attendance

Resources and support for families

Emotionally related school avoidance parent workshop link and information

Coombe Trust Attendance Pledge & Home School Collaboration