The Education Welfare Service issues fines for holidays in term time 

Unauthorised leave for 10 sessions (5 school days) or more will qualify for a fine. No warning will be issued from the Local Authority because it is assumed that school will inform all parents that leave in term time will  not be authorised unless it is exceptional circumstances.  

Attendance at St Mary’s RC Primary School

We believe that children cannot learn if they are absent from school. Therefore, we aim to ensure that all our children take full advantage of the educational opportunities available to them and to raise standards by promoting regular attendance and punctuality of pupils.

We are committed to providing an education of the highest quality for all our pupils. We believe high attainment depends on good attendance.

We expect all school personnel to support and promote excellent school attendance by acting as role models and to work hard to provide a learning environment in which all pupils are eager to learn, feel valued and enjoy coming to school.

Sometimes a pupil’s absence or lateness may not be their fault and in these circumstances it is our policy to be supportive of the child and not to make them feel guilty or inadequate. Also, at times we have to give allowances for religious beliefs and individual family circumstances.

We believe it is essential to regularly remind parents of the importance of good attendance and its links to pupil attainment. The Education Act 1996 clearly states that the prime responsibility of parents/carers is to ensure that their children attend school regularly.

If your child is ill and will be absent from school, it is essential that you inform the school office before 9.00am on the day of the absence.

Why is Regular School Attendance so Important?

St Mary’s Primary School works closely with children and parents in connection with attendance so that each child can achieve their full potential. By law, all children of compulsory school age (five to 16) must receive a suitable full-time education.
Once your child is registered at school, you are legally responsible for making sure that they attend regularly. If your child fails to do so, you risk getting a penalty notice or being prosecuted. You also need to think about the negative impact upon the following:

  • their learning
  • their friendships
  • their self-esteem and confidence.

We monitor the attendance of every child in the school and, in partnership with the Education Welfare Office, will work with and support those children and their families who are not attending school without sufficient reason. 90% attendance sounds good, but it actually means that your child misses the equivalent of:

  • one half-day each week
  • nearly four weeks every school year
  • over one school year in a school career

Attendance Figures


Timekeeping is also important in the education of your child. If your child is persistently late then they are missing out on important learning opportunities at the start of the lesson. Can we also remind parents and carers that the school gates are open from 8:30am. The school day finishes at 3:00pm

Attendance-Meeting Letters

These letters will be issued in November and March each year. If your child has an attendance below 90% you will be invited into school to meet with our attendance team to discuss your child’s current attendance and how we can make it better.

Praise and celebration 

At St Mary’s RC Primary School, we like to encourage and praise children who attend school regularly. Throughout the year, our staff and social workers will work closely with families providing support to help overcome barriers to improve attendance.