Attendance & Leave Under Exceptional Circumstances

St Joseph's is committed to providing high quality inclusive learning opportunities for all students.  We believe that if students are to reach their full potential, then excellent attendance is crucial.  Any problems that impede full attendance will be identified and addressed as quickly as possible.  St Joseph's School follows the Government’s Guidance on the Education (Student Registration – England) Regulations 2006.  Click on the link below to see our full attendance policy. 

If there are problems which affect a student’s attendance we will investigate, identify and strive, in partnership with parents, students and Education Welfare Services to resolve those problems as quickly and efficiently as possible.  

We adopt a clearly focused approach aimed at returning the student to full attendance at all times. Good attendance constitutes 95% and above.



90% in a test can be seen as a good score; 90% attendance isn’t – it’s the same as having nearly 4 weeks off school in a year!  See the grid below:

 Attendance percentages



First day contact is an integral part of our Attendance Policy.  Parents and students must realise that whenever possible a student’s absence will be noted and acted upon swiftly.  First day contact sends a clear message that attendance is very important and enables us to quickly determine that a student who is absent is genuinely ill and safely at home.

Parents should contact the school by 9.30am on the first morning that their child is away.  The school has a 24hr answer machine, please leave a message if your call is not answered.  Reasons for the child’s absence should be given.  You are asked to contact us on every following morning unless you have informed us in writing in advance.



With effect from the 1st September 2013, the law no longer gives any entitlement to parents to take their child on holiday during term time and Headteachers can no longer grant any extended leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.  

If you are going to request a leave of absence under exceptional circumstances you are asked to complete a Leave of Absence Under Exceptional Circumstances Form and return it to the school office.

On occasions, parents have reported their child as ill when, in fact, they have been on a family holiday.  When we have reason to believe this may be the case, we will follow this up so we encourage your honesty in these matters to save putting families in an embarrassing situation.

If the Headteacher does not authorise an absence, but the child is still absent, then the absence will be recorded as unauthorised and may result in a Penalty Notice Fine being issued.