At Gawthorpe Community Academy we work closely with parents and carers to achieve and maintain high standards of attendance. For a child to reach their full educational achievement coming to school every day is essential. We are committed to providing an education of the highest quality for all our children in an environment where all pupils feel welcome and valued. Every child has a right to access the education to which he/she is entitled.

It is our duty to consistently strive to achieve a goal of 100% attendance for all children. We use every opportunity to convey to pupils and their parents or carers the importance of regular and punctual attendance. For our children to take full advantage of the educational opportunities offered it is vital a child is at school, on time, every day the school is open unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable. High attainment, confidence with peers and staff and future aspirations depend on good attendance.

As set down by the Department for Education, schools are only able to authorise absence from school in exceptional circumstances. When requesting an authorised absence from school you will need to explain why the circumstances are exceptional. Please note there is no general right to authorise absence for a family holiday and if you take your child out of school without permission the absence will be unauthorised and a Penalty Notice may be considered.

Explanation of Annual Percentage (%) Attendance

Attendance Days Missed Over a Year
100% 00 Days
95% 10 Days
90% 20 Days
85% 30 Days
80% 40 Days

If your child’s attendance is under 95%, they are missing at least two weeks of learning time a year. If their attendance is at 90%, they are missing four weeks. This will significantly affect their work and reduce their grades.


The responsibilities in relation to attendance are as follows:-

  • Set high expectations for pupil attendance, and monitor individual and whole school attendance on a daily and weekly basis,
  • Identify causes of concern with regard to pupil attendance.
  • Conduct first day response where there is unexplained absence.
  • Invite parents/carers into school to discuss pupil attendance which is a cause of concern.
  • Work with parents of individual pupils to try to improve attendance and punctuality.
  • Work in partnership with Wakefield Authority and the Education Welfare Service and the Inspire Partnership MAT.
  • Maintain electronic registration data systems effectively and deploy them robustly to facilitate presentation reports.
  • To provide attendance data for parents.
  • Promote attendance at all levels.
  • Celebrate excellent and improved attendance.

*Please note school does not authorise holidays during term time. 

  • To ensure pupils arrive at school on time everyday and that routines are in place at home to support this.
  • To contact school by 9.00am on each day of absence if the absence is unavoidable.
  • To obtain evidence where possible to support medical absence.
  • To avoid term time holidays, and attempt to minimise school time appointments.
  • To arrive at school, on time everyday with correct equipment and ready to learn.
  • Comply with school regulations regarding attendance and punctuality.
  • Discuss any concerns they may have with staff regarding attendance and punctuality
Education Welfare Service
  • The Education Welfare Service will work in partnership to promote and facilitate improved attendance, at an individual level, by supporting the Fast Track to Attendance Programme; and at a whole school level using proactive strategies and action plans.
  • The Education Welfare Service will work with children and families to ensure their school attendance and safeguarding is maintained.
  • The Education Welfare Service will provide guidance with regards to Children Missing Education.
  • The Education Welfare Service will work in partnership with other agencies and will offer advice and signposting for referrals to appropriate organisations.
  • The Education Welfare Service will undertake legal action on behalf of the school.
  • Wakefield Local Authority will support the school with networking and training events and with individual School Audits and Action Plans.

Good attendance is perhaps the most important factor in successful learning. Gawthorpe Community Academy recognises that there is a clear link between student attendance and achievement, and that students with good attendance have the best chance of being successful. At Gawthorpe Community Academy, students are encouraged to have 100% attendance, and aim for a minimum of 97% over the Academic year.

Parents are requested not to arrange family holidays or visits during term time. Applications for such visits will not be approved and will count as unauthorised absence, which could lead to a penalty notice being issued. If you wish to request a leave of absence during term time, please do this in writing and submit it to Mr White, our Headteacher, to consider.

Punctuality is essential if your child is going to make the most of their learning. If your child is absent then you must telephone the Academy office by 8.35 am each day your child is absent.

The law states that children should arrive at school on time, every day.  For example if School doors open at 8.45am it is expected that pupils should be there ready to learn from the time when the first register is taken. A pupil who arrives late but before the register has closed will be marked as late; using the appropriate code (L).

Poor punctuality is unacceptable and persistent lateness, i.e. after the close of registration could result in a penalty notice.  A pupil who arrives after the close of register will be marked as an unauthorised absent, using the appropriate code (U).  If children are late on a regular basis then the school will meet parents to discuss what measures may be required to ensure that child/ren arrive at school by the appropriate time. If a pupil has a period of 10 lates in the academic year, the school has the right to record any further lates as unauthorised absence.  Poor punctuality is unacceptable and persistent lateness will be referred onto the Education Welfare Service and parents may risk legal action.

Mr White (Headteacher) and I are always happy to discuss this information if you would like further details.

If you have any questions or require further support please feel free to contact me here at the academy or on 01924 679680.