sandbach high school


The Importance of Regular Attendance

We have always been proud of the close, cooperative relationship which exists between school and home over the matter of attendance.  Clearly, both parents/carers and teachers want students to attend lessons regularly and only to be absent from school when it is absolutely necessary.  Students themselves also find that they get more out of their years of education if they are good attenders.

  • 17 days missed from school each year equates to a whole GCSE grade.
  • Attendance affects learning, future earnings, wellbeing and a personal sense of belonging.

What we promise to do to help students achieve good attendance

  • We will take form registers at the start of every morning.
  • Teachers will take an electronic register during each lesson and note any absentees.
  • We will contact parents/carers if we have any cause for concern over attendance.
  • We will undertake home visits to support parents/carers in making sure their child attends school.
  • We will contact parents/carers on the first day of any unexplained absence.
  • We will give you regular reports about your child's attendance, and about the attendance levels of the school as a whole.
  • We will respond sensitively to absence if it is caused by short-term family difficulties.
  • We will work closely with the Attendance and Children Out of School Service, particularly if difficulties with attendance seem to be more than just temporary.
  • We will notify you by letter of our concerns should your child’s attendance fall below an acceptable level in any school year. This would normally be below 97%.
  • We will positively and publicly reward full attendance for one, two or three terms in any school year by awarding a Bronze, Silver or Gold Certificate of Attendance to the student concerned. A lapel badge is presented to those achieving a Gold Award.
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What we ask you to do

Attendance at school is essential if students are to make the most of the opportunities we offer.  If you know that your child  is going to be away, you should tell your child's Form Tutor in advance.  Otherwise you should email or telephone the School on 01270 765031 on the first day of absence and bring a note on their return to school.  Attendance under 97% will always be investigated.

Please try to make any medical and dental appointments, as far as possible, for holidays or after school.

Where poor attendance is emerging we will ask for medical evidence as to why the child is unable to attend school. The school will decide whether to authorise or unauthorise the absence.




PLEASE NOTE: The Government categorises students whose attendance has fallen below 90% as ‘Persistent Absentees’


Punctuality is very important and we are often asked to comment on this when writing references for employment and further education courses.  We find when students arrive promptly they are able to have a calm and settled start to their day.

We will record the names of students who arrive after the 8.30am bell as per amended policy.

If students are late for reasons such as medical/dental appointments they will be marked with an ‘L’ code, which is counted as late but present, with a comment noted.  This will allow students to maintain their 100% attendance record.

For any student who is late to school, after registration closes (8.55am) and does not have a valid reason to be late, the absence will be coded as unauthorised (U).


Amendments to the 2006 regulations make it clear that Headteachers may not grant leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.  This includes holidays.  Headteachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.

If you do need to request term time exceptional absence you will need to write to the Headteacher at least 14 days before the absence/holiday explaining the reasons.  Each request will be considered carefully on an individual basis.

Holidays in Term Time?

Each request made because of exceptional circumstances can only be judged on a case-by-case basis. This will take into account individual circumstances, as to why this holiday has been requested to take place in term time and therefore miss face to face learning, the proximity of key dates for tests and examinations.  While leave of absence might be granted for a term time holiday, it is granted entirely at the Headteacher’s discretion and is not a parental right.

If we do not authorise a leave of absence and parents still take their child on holiday, the absence is unauthorised and will be recorded with a ‘G’ code indicating an unauthorised holiday.

Absence Requests

(Including Children in Entertainment)

Parents are encouraged to minimise requests for students to miss face to face learning. When a request is submitted the child's attendance will be considered to inform the decision as to whether it will be authorised or not.

To obtain a licence, an application must be made by the producer or organiser of the event to the Attendance and Out of School Service from whom further details can be obtained.

Penalty Notice (PN)

A PN may be issued in cases of unauthorised absence and may be considered appropriate in any of the following circumstances.

  • In cases of truancy.
  • In cases of parentally condoned absence where this can be demonstrated.
  • In instances of unauthorised holidays in term time.
  • In cases of persistent late arrival at school after the register has closed.

Further details can be obtained from the Attendance and Out of School Service 01270 375255 or on the Cheshire East website.


In Conclusion

We hope that this information will be useful to you and that students, parents and the school can work together to bring students' attendance as near to 100% as possible.  If you would like to ask about anything in this policy, please feel free to contact your child's Form Teacher or Achievement Coordinator or Miss Darlington, Deputy Headteacher.

The school telephone number is 01270 765031.

The Student Attendance policy can be found on our policy page.