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The Howard Partnership Trust is a growing family of 13 schools in the South East of England. Our family includes Primary, Secondary and Special Schools and welcomes any school that shares our values and commitment to Bringing out the Best in each and every one of our children and young people. Visit website

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Attendance and Student Absence



Howard of Effingham School is committed, in partnership with parents/carers, students, governors and the Local Authority to ensuring that students attend school regularly.


For full details, please refer to the THPT attendance policy, available in the policy section of our website.




If your child is unwell and unable to attend school, please call us on the usual number (01372 453694) and select Option 1. Please do this as early as possible on each day of absence, and by 8.30am at the latest. You can also complete the illness form.


Medical Appointment

Please complete this form to notify us of any planned medical appointments. We would be grateful if you could give us 2 working days’ notice (or as much time as possible) so that we can amend registers accordingly. If the medical appointment is taking place today, please call the absence line (see above).  


Leave of Absence

As parents/carers, you have a legal responsibility to ensure your child's attendance at school. During the academic year students are at school for 190 days and at home for 175 days.


Please be aware that The Education Act (pupil registration) (England) (amendment) Regulations 2016 state that Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. The Headteacher is also required to  determine the number of days a child may be away from school if leave is granted.


Please complete and submit this form if you would like the Principal / SLT to consider your request for your child's leave of absence for exceptional circumstances. We may ask for evidence to back up your request.


Please note that unauthorised absence of 5 days or more may result in the issue of a Penalty Notice from Surrey Country Council. Penalty notices are issues by the Local Authority in accordance with Surrey County Council's code of conduct. The Penalty notice is £60, per child per parent/carer., if paid within 21 days or £120 if paid after 21 days but within 28 days. Failure to pay the Penalty Notice will result in you being served a summons to appear at the Magistrates Court.


The Headteacher/representative will consider the reasons for the request carefully and will notify you of the decision via post. For further information, please refer to our School Attendance Policy.


Attendance Rewards  

At The Howard we actively seek to reward students who consistently do the right thing. Students are rewarded for excellent attendance by year teams and through assemblies on a half-termly basis. You can check your child’s attendance using the SIMS app.



Any absence affects learning and regular absence will seriously affect a student’s ability to get good grades. For example, a student who has above 95% attendance has a 75% chance of meeting their target grades. When attendance falls below 88% they have less than a 30% chance of achieving a good set of GCSE results. A student who has 4 days off each half term would have an attendance percentage of less than 88%. Having a good education helps to enable students to realise their full potential, increases the chance of future economic stability, builds confidence and resilience and is a factor in ensuring good mental health. For students to gain the greatest benefit from their education it is vital that they attend school regularly and that they be at school, on time, every day the school is open unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable.


Attendance over One School Year 


Weeks of lost learning

Days of lost learning

Hours of lost learning

95% attendance

Less than 2 weeks

Less than 10 days

Less than 50 hours

90% attendance

4 weeks

20 days

100 hours

85% attendance

5.5 weeks

27.5 days

137.5 hours


If a student maintained an attendance percentage of 85-90% during years 7 to 11 they would miss the equivalent of approximately half a year of school, this equates to 487.5 hours of lost learning. If a student’s average attendance was 80% during years 7-11 this would be the equivalent of missing a whole year of school.



It is expected that all students will maintain excellent standards of punctuality. 

  • The school day starts at 8:45am
  • When a student is late (after 8:48) to school they must report to Student Services and sign in.
  • At 9.15am the registers will be closed. If a child arrives after that time it will be marked as unauthorised absence.


Absence Procedures 

If a student is absent from morning registration the school will telephone or text the parent/carer on the first day of absence (this may not be until later in the day once the absence line and forms have been checked) if we have not already heard from the parent/carer. The school will continue to try and contact parents/carers if there is no response to the telephone call. Where there has been no response, Student Services will inform the Tutors/ Year Lead and if necessary the Designated Safeguarding Lead. When truancy is confirmed, parents will be informed and asked to make contact with the student. Students that truant will receive a school sanction. The school will telephone or text parents every day of absence unless the school has been contacted by parents/carers to say that the students will not be attending.


Students leaving school during the day 

Students are not allowed to leave the school site without prior permission from school. Parents/carers should arrange medical appointments outside school time (especially routine ones like dental check-ups and GP visits). If it is not possible to schedule a medical appointment outside of the school day, please ensure that the student is in school for as much of the day as possible before and after the appointment.


Parents need to send in a letter or note in the school planner the reason for any planned absence, stating the time of leaving, the expected return time and whether the student is being collected or will make their own way to their destination. Students must sign out in student services on leaving the school and sign back in on their return.


Covid Update 

We are aware that the pandemic has had an effect on families, but the expectation is still that every child should now be attending school full time. If you consider that there are exceptional circumstances relating to your request, please let the school have full details. Each application for a leave of absence will be considered on a case by case basis.


Advice and support is available from an Inclusion Officer by contacting your local Education Office as follows :-

North West        -     Tel: 01483 518130    South West      -           Tel: 01483 517179

North East        -     Tel: 01372 833588    South East       -           Tel: 01737 737777