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Athelney Primary School

Success for today; prepared for tomorrow. Nothing is beyond our reach.

Attendance and Punctuality


At Athelney Primary School, we understand the importance of both good attendance and punctuality. Both are crucial in supporting our pupils to reach their full learning potential and contribute to their social interaction and learning experience.


Our Key Aims at Athelney Primary School are:


  • To ensure that every child is safeguarded and their right to education is protected.
  • To match or exceed Lewisham’s target of 96% Attendance, through rewards and incentives for good attendance and punctuality.
  • To raise standards and ensure every child reaches their full educational potential, through a high level of school attendance and punctuality


The role of the parents or carers


  • Ensure their child attends school and arrives on time every day.
  • Promote a good attitude to learning by ensuring their children attend school in the

correct uniform and with the basic equipment required for lessons. (i.e. complete PE kits, swimming kits etc.)

  • Not arrange medical and dental appointments in school time wherever possible. *
  • Telephone to inform the school on the first day of absence for their child, informing the school of the reason for the absence and giving an expected return date.
  • Respond promptly to any communication sent by the school concerning their child’s attendance.
  • Work in partnership with the school and other agencies in the best interests of their

child; this includes informing the school about significant influences and changes in the child’s life, which may impact on learning.


* If it is not possible to schedule appointments outside of the school day, the office must be provided with medical evidence and informed prior to the appointment.


Keeping your Child Off due to sickness:


When a child is unwell, the school office must be notified before 8:45 am on the first day of absence, along with the reason for the absence.


Do I need to Keep My Child Off School - Click here for further guidance from public 


What happens if we are worried about your child’s school attendance?


Good attendance is 96% or more, if attendance is below 90% the child is classified as ‘persistently absent’ from school and this will have a negative impact on the child’s learning.


If we have concerns about your child’s attendance, we will contact you so that we can offer support and work together to make sure your child’s attendance is good. We employ an Education Welfare Officer (EWO) from Lewisham who will also work with families if there is concern about school attendance.


Holidays & Leave of Absence


There is no legal entitlement to holidays or leave of absence during term time.


A leave of absence can now only be authorised in exceptional circumstances. Holidays are not deemed to be exceptional circumstances and therefore will not be authorised. If a parent wishes to take their child out of school and believes that the circumstances are exceptional, the request must be put in writing to the Head of School. A form is available from the school office or here. The Head of School will then make a decision, on whether or not the leave can be lawfully authorised and will do so only if there is a genuine, exceptional and urgent reason for a child to be absent during term time.


Please return your form to : 

Top Tips for Improving Punctuality




It’s a GREAT START to the day, putting your child in a positive frame of mind to make the most of the day’s learning and activities.


Punctuality is linked to good attendance, and as we know, good attenders have more opportunities, more support and therefore achieve more!




It helps your child make friends (in the playground) which leads to improved self-confidence and therefore SUCCESS




It sets your child up for their future – whether it is college, work or university, they could lose their place or lose their job if they think it’s ok to be late!




1. Late before register closes Your child is a few minutes late – but they have missed the opportunity to say hello to and play with friends. They are likely to feel unsettled and embarrassed as they start morning lessons.

2. Late after register closes This counts as an unauthorised absence and will show on your child’s attendance record. Not only has your child missed the chance to meet with their friends before school, they are likely to have missed the start of lessons and could feel unsettled, embarrassed and much less confident than their classmates as the lesson moves on.




  • Get to know your child’s school timetable – work together to make sure they have everything ready the night before e.g. books, PE or swimming kit, uniform!
  • Get your child into the habit of doing their homework in the evening – instead of in the morning at the breakfast table.
  • Make sure your child has a good bedtime routine so they get plenty of rest and don’t struggle out of bed in the morning – not a bad idea for parents either!
  • Invest in a good, reliable alarm clock – make setting it part of your child’s bedtime routine.
  • Try to ensure your child has a good breakfast to set them up for the day – we have a super breakfast club you could use if you need to be at work early.
  • Have a back up plan for getting your child to school in case something crops up – friends or family, perhaps neighbours who are taking their children to school anyway.
  • Allow lots of time for your journey.
  • If you are finding it difficult to get your child to school on time, talk to a teacher and ask for help!