Ashford Church of England Primary School

Ashford Church of England Primary School

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Attendance and Punctuality

We expect children to attend school regularly and to be on time. We believe good attendance contributes directly to the standards the children achieve, as does punctuality. In keeping with national policy, we strong discourage any absence for holidays during term time and are unable to authorise it. Parents are asked to consider very carefully the implications for their own child and others before making a decision to remove their child from the education that is provided in school in term time. Children should only be removed in exceptional circumstances. Legislation that became law on 1st September 2013 states that Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Applications for leave of absence for exceptional circumstances must be made in advance, please speak to the school office who will provide you with the necessary form.

The following points should be considered:

  • Taking a child out of school is disruptive to their learning at the time, before and after the event.
  • Absence may be disruptive to others in the class.
  • Children away from school miss the scheduled work and will not be able to maintain progress. Groupings may have to be changed as a result.
  • Confidence and self esteem may be damaged as the child no longer feels part of the class and the learning situation has moved forward without them.
  • Taking children out of school conveys a hidden message about values that are placed on education ie a holiday/special occasion is more important than the learning taking place. This attitude may be adopted by the child.
  • With effect from 1st September 2019 parents may receive a fine from the local authority for unauthorised holidays in term time.

Please refer to our Attendance Policy on our School Policies page for further information on attendance.

Why is attendance important?

  • School ensures that children have the best start in life.
  • Good attendance gives them more chance of succeeding in life both academically and socially.
  • The more school children miss the harder it is to catch up.
  • Statistics show that those with persistent absence fail to achieve good grades in their GCSE’s.
  • Poor achievement gives children less opportunities and less options when they leave school.
  • The suggested acceptable level of attendance is 96%.
  • If your child’s attendance is 90% then they are absent for the equivalent of half day every week.
  • 90% attendance means your child misses four weeks of school.
  • If attendance continues at only 90% then over their time in primary school your child will miss the equivalent of half a year of education.

Tips to ensure your child has good attendance

  • Read all school communications. Check your child’s bag for letters, ensure we have your correct email address and don’t forget to read ACE’s Highlights, our weekly newsletter.
  • Make dental/medical appointments out of school time where possible.
  • Encourage and show interest, ask about their day.
  • Know the name of your child’s class teacher.
  • Do not take holidays during term time.


  • Children get upset if they are late for school.
  • Children miss the morning welcome and instructions for the day if they are late.
  • Being late for school impacts on your child’s friendship groups.
  • 5 minutes late each day equals 3 days education lost per year. 30 minutes late each day equals 19 days education lost per year.
  • Remember — be an ACE timekeeper!

Attendance Awards

Each week there will be a prize draw. Each child who has over 98% attendance FOR THAT WEEK will be entered and have the chance to win a prize. There will be one prize-winner from the Juniors and one for the Infants.


It is important that you aim to bring your child to school in good time to enter via the school gate in the morning. Once the gate has closed you must come in via the school office and sign in the late book. Persistent lateness can add up to hours of missed education. Being late also means your child misses registration and vital instructions that are given at the start of the school day. Lateness is monitored by the Surrey Inclusion Officer.

Absence from school

You must provide the school with at least 2 emergency contacts for your child. If a child is ill or unable to attend school it is essential that parents notify us as early as possible on the first day of absence.

It is a parent’s legal responsibility to ensure that a child attends school and to inform the school of the reason for absence before 9.00am daily. Please do not wait for us to contact you.

Where a child’s attendance falls below 90% we will be unable to authorise absence on the grounds of illness without supporting evidence (copy of prescription, attendance card from Doctors etc.). We reserve the right to enter sickness as unauthorised. This is monitored by the Surrey Inclusion Officer.

If your child has a medical appointment, please email the office prior to the appointment.

PHA Advice

Sickness/injury at school

Children who have a sickness or diarrhoea bug must then remain at home for 48 hours after the last episode in order to prevent transmission to others. These bugs spread rapidly in a school environment. (This changes to 24 hours if sick for other reasons) If a child is sick in school, we will ring you in order to collect them. If a child is hurt and we are concerned, we will also ring to advise you and agree further action if appropriate.


We are unable to administer non-prescribed medication or pain killers in school unless this has been specifically agreed by a Senior Leader. We are also unable to apply suncream or administer Calpol. Parents should apply suncream to the children before coming to school. Parents may come to school during the day to administer Calpol and other adhoc medicines if required. We do, actively support children who have the need for life supporting medication, such as inhalers and epi-pens. To enable us to react instantly to your child’s condition, inhalers and epi-pens are stored in a red medical rucksack hanging on or very near the door in your child’s classroom. This rucksack will be taken on all class/school trips, into the hall and the playground for outdoor PE and fire drills. If your child is prescribed with an inhaler or epi-pen, then please contact the school office for a Medication Form or if you have any further queries. It remains the parents responsibility to ensure medication is within date. All medication MUST be handed to Miss Eglesfield in the School Office and NOT to the class teacher.