Attendance Counts


Why does attendance matter?


At Dhekelia Primary School we recognise the positive impact that regular attendance has on children’s achievement. Good consistent attendance at school is crucial to give your child the best chance of success. We need your support in ensuring that absences are not planned in school time, so that your child has every opportunity to succeed.

Evidence suggests a strong link between attendance and school success. If your child misses school for 1 day he/she gets more than 2 days behind classmates because he/she must make up missed learning and catch up with new learning at the same time. This multiplies the greater amount of time that is missed. Some children may find it difficult on re-entry to re-establish relationships with other children and teachers. This can be magnified given the instability of regular mobility within SCE schools.

The Law on Pupil Attendance
The law says that parents do NOT have the right to take their children out of school for holidays during term time. 
If you need to take your child away from school, ONLY the Headteacher can authorise absences and then only in exceptional circumstances. Examples of ‘exceptional’ would include bereavement or serious illness of relatives, medical needs where treatment is required in the UK by the child’s primary care giver. In addition, SCE schools are also able to authorise absence due to Post Operational Leave (POL) and this is for a maximum period of 10 days.  However, it is important that all parents recognise that outside POL we will not authorise any term-time holidays. 
If you take a holiday without the Head’s permission or if your child fails to return on the agreed date, or you fail to notify the school with a satisfactory reason for absence then this will be recorded as unauthorised absence ie truancy.
After a period of unauthorised absence the school can also take your child off the roll. This could result in you having to apply to a different school for your child.
Joint Services Publication (JSP) 342, Chapter 4, Paragraph 4.1 states that:
‘It is the duty of the parent of a child of compulsory school age to ensure that that child receives efficient fulltime education. Failure to ensure that a child of school age receives efficient education will be referred to the Commanding Officer where the parent is a member of the Services or to the parent’s Head of Establishment in the case of other entitled persons.’
Process for Requesting Term Time Leave
If you want to request leave for your child at any time, you must seek authentication from your Unit Welfare Office at least 3 weeks prior to the first day of planned absence. The final decision on whether or not your child will be granted leave will be made by the Headteacher.
Follow the 3 Step process:
  • Collect the appropriate request form from either the UWO or school office
  • Seek authentication from the UWO
  • Submit request form to school
In rare circumstances you may need to request compassionate leave at very short notice. In this case please approach the school directly.
Dhekelia Primary School Attendance Procedures
You must NOT take your child out of school during term time unless it is authorise.
Your child should attend school everyday unless:
  • He/she is too ill to leave the house
  • He/she has an infectious disease like chicken pox, mumps or measles
  • He/she has an injury preventing safe movement around the school
If you know your child will not be attending school, you must ring school and let us know. Failure to provide a reason for your child’s absence will result in the absence being recorded as unauthorised.
Remember: as a parent you are contravening JSP 342 if you fail to make sure your child attends school regularly. 
If you have any concerns about your child’s attendance, or would like more information regarding term time absence please contact the school.