Attendance and punctuality

To report a child's absence, please call 020 8539 6777

Barclay Primary School recognises, values and respects each student’s individuality.

We believe that every student is entitled to the highest possible quality of education and consequently place an extremely high priority on excellent attendance. We celebrate achievement and recognise that regular school attendance is a critical contributory factor to a productive and successful career. Full and/or improved attendance will be actively promoted and encouraged for all of our students. Irregular attendance undermines the student, school and the community as a whole; it can impair academic progress and may place students at risk of involvement in anti-social and/or criminal behaviour.

For the philosophy of this school to effectively work in practice, several expectations are placed upon all those involved:

Our expectations of pupils

  • To attend school regularly and on time.
  • To arrive on time for all lessons and be appropriately prepared for the school day.
  • To inform a member of staff of any problem that may hinder their attendance at school.
  • To be equipped and ready to learn.

Our expectations of parents

  • To encourage their children to attend school regularly.
  • To contact the school whenever their child is unable to attend school – preferably on the first day of absence.
  • To ensure that their children arrive on time and are well prepared for the school day.
  • To keep in contact with school with confidence and inform the appropriate member of staff if any problem occurs which may hinder their child’s regular attendance or behaviour in school.
  • To seek to attend meetings in school to discuss their child.

Where improvements are not made and children are persistently absent, the school will contact parents via letter asking for an improvement and an explanation of low attendance.

Authorised absence
 is defined as:

  • When a student is absent as a result of illness and an acceptable explanation has been received.
  • Religious observance (as defined in the exemptions list).
  • Where a child has had a fixed-term exclusion from school
  • Medical/dental appointments (sight of appointment card should be requested). Appointments should be made outside of school hours wherever possible and the minimum amount of time should be taken.
  • Exceptional circumstances (unavoidable absence) – this does not include holidays taken in term time or family needs. 

Persistent absence

Parents whose children are failing to attend school regularly without good reason can face prosecution within 12 weeks of being informed that improvements need to be made. This can lead to a maximum fine of £2,500, up to three months imprisonment and a criminal record. Alternatively, parents can be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of £60, paid within 21 days and rising to £120 if not paid within 28 days. This penalty is also applicable where parents take children on holiday without authorisation from the head teacher and where there has been continued late arrival after the school register has closed. Another possible course of action is an application to the Family Court for an Education Supervision Order.


97 to 100% =
an excellent level
of attendance

95% attendance =
the accepted level
by law

90% attendance
means you miss
half a day a week

85% attendance
means you miss
half a term a year