Harston and Newton Community Primary School
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Attendance and absence

We expect all children on roll to attend every day, when the school is in session, so long as they are fit and healthy. We do all we can to encourage the children to attend, and to put in place appropriate procedures to monitor absence. We believe that the most important factor in promoting good attendance is the development of positive attitudes towards school. To this end we strive to make our school a happy and rewarding experience for all children.



Government legislation requires parents to ensure that their children attend school regularly and punctually, and has laid down guidance on authorised and unauthorised absences. Authorised absence may includes illness, medical and dental appointments and religious observances. 



The school day starts at 8.50 a.m. and registration is competed so the first lesson starts promptly at 9.00 a.m. If a child arrives at school after this time, he/she should go to the school office to sign in. This will then be coded in the register as L, to indicate that the child was late. If a child arrives at school more than 10 minutes after the close of registration, this will be considered an unauthorised absence.



If your child is absent from school, or unavoidably late, please email the school office ( as soon as possible, or telephone the office by 8.30 a.m. Please tell us your child's name and class and the reason for the absence. For example: high temperature, cough, chickenpox - it is not sufficient to simply say "unwell". You can leave a message on the school answerphone if the office is unmanned.  If the child is absent for more than one day, please telephone each day, unless you have previously confirmed the length of absence.

     Please do not send your child to school if s/he is unwell; we have very limited facilities for looking after sick children. Children who have suffered sickness or diarrhoea should not return to school for at least 48 hours after the last bout of sickness or diarrhoea has stopped.

     It is essential that we have an up-to-date day time telephone number, so that we can contact parents if children become ill or have an accident.


Collecting before 3.20 p.m.

If it is necessary for your child to leave school before the end of the day to attend an appointment, please complete a form which is available from the school office, stating the time at which the child will be collected. No child will be allowed to leave the site unless collected by his or her parents, or another adult who is known by the school to have permission from the parent to collect their child. All children must be signed out at the school office. 



Leave of absence

Children need to be in school for all sessions, so that they can make the best possible progress. However, we do understand that there are times where a parent may request leave of absence in exceptional circumstances. Holiday requests will not be authorised. Well in advance, a request should be made by completing a ‘Leave of absence’ form. These are available from the school office. Parent/Carers will be informed, in writing, whether the request meets the criteria for authorised absence.

Unauthorised absence

Unauthorised absence (truancy) is defined as any absence from school, or a child arriving 10 minutes after the register has been taken, without a suitable explanation. Unauthorised absence will be recorded on your child’s school report. The truancy figures for every school  in the country are collated during the summer term.

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