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Luton Borough Council

School attendance - A parent's responsibility

By law, all children of compulsory school age (5-16 years) must receive a full time education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude

Who is responsible?
As a parent/carer you are responsible for making sure that your child attends the school at which s/he is registered regularly and punctually.
What happens if my child is unwell?
Children do become ill on occasion, but it’s important that regular attendance is maintained as far as possible.

Don’t let minor or trivial ailments stop your child from attending school. The school will always contact you if your child is too unwell to complete the school day.

If your child is absent, you must call the school on the first day of absence and send a letter to the school when they return.

Please contact your child’s school for further information or advice.

What can I do if my child is being bullied?
If your child is being bullied, the situation will not be resolved by keeping your child off school. You need to work with the school and speak to your child’s class teacher in the first instance.

Some cases of bullying can take a while to resolve, but it’s essential that your child continues to attend school to avoid any further complications e.g. falling behind in their work.

Can my child attend dentist/ doctor’s appointments?
Unless your child is receiving urgent medical or dental treatment, all appointments should where possible be made after school, or during school holidays.

If the appointment is unavoidable, please speak to the Headteacher for further advice and try to keep any disruption to your child’s school day to a minimum.

Can my child have the day off school to buy a school uniform?
We appreciate that needs may unexpectedly arise; however, it is not acceptable to take your child out of school to buy a uniform. This should be done outside school hours.

If your child is without the correct uniform, speak to the Headteacher to see whether alternative arrangements can be made.

Remember most school uniform can be purchased at your child’s school.

Can I take my child abroad/on holiday during term time?
A school will only agree to this in exceptional circumstances. The school will be able to advise you of its policy regarding term-time leave. You must get permission from the Headteacher before taking your child out of school. Failure to do so may result in a penalty notice being issued or your child
being removed from the school’s register.

What will happen if my child does not attend school?
If your child fails to attend school regularly and the absences are unauthorised, as a parent/carer you are guilty of an offence under Section 444 of The Education Act 1996.

You may be prosecuted in the magistrates’ court and if found guilty are liable to a fine of up to £2,500 or imprisonment.

Alternatively, you may be issued with a penalty notice. If you do not pay the penalty notice you will be prosecuted in the magistrates’ court.

Contact info
Education Welfare Service

Tel: 01582 548174

[email protected]


© 2024 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ