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We expect all children on roll to attend every day as long as they are fit and healthy enough to do so. We encourage the children to attend, and we put in place appropriate procedures. We believe that the most important factor in promoting good attendance is the development of positive attitudes towards school. We strive to make our school a happy and rewarding experience for all children.

Our overall attendance target is 96.2%. 

Topcliffe Primary School is working in partnership with parents to improve school attendance.   We would like to congratulate the many parents who make sure their children attend school regularly.

It is a parent’s legal responsibility to ensure their children receive appropriate education.  Failing to send your child to school regularly without good reason is a criminal offence.

Absence can only be authorised by the Head Teacherwithin the boundaries set by the Education (Pupil Registrations) (England) Regulations 2006.

Please remember that parental illness, going shopping, visiting family, truancy, not wanting to go to school, alleged bullying, (speak to school immediately to resolve the issue), are not acceptable reasons to be absent. All of these will be recorded as unauthorised absence, including if your child arrives at school after the close of registration. Leave in term time will only be authorised in exceptional circumstances.

Legal action that may be taken include:

  • Issuing penalty notices: Each parent receives a penalty notice for each child who has unauthorised absence.  The penalty is £60 or £120 depending on how soon payment is made.  So, if there are two parents and two children the total penalties could be up to £480. Failure to pay may result in prosecution.
  • Taking parents to court for unauthorised absence: Education Act 1996 Section 444(1) – court can fine each parent up to £1000 per child, order payment of prosecution costs and/or impose a Parenting Order.
  • Taking parents to court for persistent unauthorised absence: Education Act 1996 Section 444(1A) – court can fine each parent up to £2,500 per child, order payment of the prosecution costs, impose a Parenting Order and/or sentence a period of imprisonment of up to 3 months.

Being taken to court could result in you having a criminal record. 


Warwickshire Attendance Service 

 The Warwickshire Attendance service (WAS) are a trade Service and commissioned by the WHMAT. WAS representatives have a role to play in ensuring that children and young people are adequately supported in improving their attendance when required. Each year WAS will work in partnership with the Attendance lead and School Attendance Officers to support attendance of children within the school and families. The WAS representative will:

  • Further support in developing systems to ensure consistency and uniformity in communication and sharing key information.
  • Support a tiered approach to escalation to improve attendance and deliver legal intervention.
  • Support in monitoring absence and day to day procedures defining clear roles and responsibilities.
  • Provide capacity in monitoring children identified as requiring early intervention (95% attendance).
  • Evidence and review documentation to support any legal process.
  • Support data analysis.
  • Warwickshire Attendance Service will adhere to and ensure that the Birmingham City Council Fast-Track guidance is implemented within the school.

School procedure 

Impact on learning 




It is essential for children to be in school regularly to benefit fully from their educational opportunities.  Good attendance will ensure that children can reach their full potential. To achieve this, children need to attend school every day. We are sure you would not jeopardise your children’s academic progress by taking them away during term time.

The importance of school attendance is such the law has now changed and Head teachers may now only grant leave in term time where the circumstances are exceptional.  This is in line with Birmingham Local Authority’s ‘Leave in term Time Guidance’ and the 2013 Amendment to the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations.

For example:

  •  death of parent/carer or sibling of the pupil
  •  life threatening or critical illness of parent or sibling of the pupil
  • parent/carer recuperation and convalescence from critical illness or surgery (leave request to be made within 6 months of recovery and medical evidence required)

Family emergencies need careful consideration. It is not always in the best interest of the child; nor appropriate for them to miss school for family emergencies that are being dealt with by adult family members. Being at school, friendships and support from staff can provide children with stability and care during difficult times. The routine of school can provide a safe and familiar background during times of uncertainty.

If you have exceptional circumstances which have lead you to request leave in term time for your child/ren, please complete the required form, which you can obtain from School.  The Head Teacher will then make a decision on whether or not the leave can be lawfully authorised and will do so only if there is a genuine, exceptional and urgent reason for a child to be absent during term time.

If a child is taken out of school without the Head Teachers authorisation, it will be recorded as unauthorised absence. This may lead to the issuing of a penalty notice and legal action being taken.

Section 23(1) Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2007:

Penalty notices may be issued to the parent of pupils who have unauthorised absence from school.  The amount of the penalty is £60.

  • If this is not paid within 21 days the amount rises to £120.
  • If not paid within 28 days the Local Authority will prosecute under section 444(1) unless it comes to our attention that the penalty notice had been issued in error.

Section 444(1) Education Act 1996:

“If you are the parent of a child of compulsory school age who fails to attend school regularly, you are guilty of an offence.”

The court can fine each parent up to £1,000 per child, order payment of the prosecution costs and/or make a Parenting Order.

Please note that:

  • penalties and prosecutions are in respect of each parent for each child.
  • ‘Parent’ includes any person who is not a parent of the child but who has parental responsibility for the child (and applies whether or not that person lives with the child) or who has care of him/her.

These prosecutions are criminal proceedings and could result in you having a criminal record.


@Topcliffeschool - 19 May
Lilies had a fantastic afternoon at Plantsbrook Nature Reserve.
@Topcliffeschool - 18 May
I wonder what is happening next week....
@Topcliffeschool - 18 May
Thank you today to Reception parents who also attended a Wellcomm Workshop today with I'm sure I heard them say Topcliffe's workshops have been some of the most well attended. 🥰 Thank you all for being so supportive. So sorry I couldn't join you all.
@Topcliffeschool - 17 May
A big thank you to the Y1 parents who attended our Wellcomm Workshop today. We were thrilled with how many parents came - we even needed to make more copies of the handouts. Thank you for your support 🥰 Reception's turn tomorrow...
@Topcliffeschool - 16 May
The Digital Brew Up at Falcon Lodge Community Hub! Every Thursday 10:00-12:00pm. No need to book, just turn up and we'll see you there
@Topcliffeschool - 16 May
Washwood Heath Multi Academy Trust are recruiting for a EYFS/KS1 Phase Lead and Primary Phase English or Maths Leader. Closing date: 9:00am, Mon 23rd May, 2022. View full details and apply online ⬇️
@Topcliffeschool - 16 May
I'm not sure. We will have a good look around for you though! 🤞
@Topcliffeschool - 13 May
A huge well done, hooray and 👍 to our Y6 pupils and staff for all of their hard work (and oodles of resilience) this week.
@Topcliffeschool - 13 May
Feeling proud of how confident our younger readers are becoming during shared reading sessions using our new scheme 📚
@Topcliffeschool - 13 May
Thank you to all the parents for attending Lilies kite workshop. We had so much fun 🤗
@Topcliffeschool - 13 May
Isolating movement of the tripod (writing) fingers to roll small balls of play dough and controlling and coordinating hand movements using cutlery to pick up the 'beans'. Additionally, this will develop independence in self-care skills ✅
@Topcliffeschool - 13 May
We certainly had lots of fun! 🪁 x
@Topcliffeschool - 9 May
Brilliant evening tonight spent at for boys football tournament.Topcliffe year 5 boys only went and WON!!! Drawing their first game and winning the other 3!🥇⚽️. So proud of them all! All played together brilliantly👏 well done to everyone involved tonight👏
@Topcliffeschool - 9 May
Thank you for the tag🥰
@Topcliffeschool - 7 May
Some fantastic independent writing in Tulips today! Last stop on market street, who might we see on the bus 🚌
@Topcliffeschool - 7 May
I was so lucky to walk through reception this morning and hear some wonderful oracy work taking place discussing predictions and describing words linking to the text: The gingerbread man. What would be the best liquid for the river?
@Topcliffeschool - 7 May
This week during tutoring, we spent some time outside practicing our Year 3 & 4 common exception words with chalk. We had great fun racing to see who could get the most words written down in 10 minutes.😁
@Topcliffeschool - 7 May
An interactive time lesson in Tulips this morning ⏰
@Topcliffeschool - 4 May
@Topcliffeschool - 4 May
Year 5 GOATI team used their communication skills to guide their blindfolded partners around the Uber night line today!! Then they were brave enough to use their sense of touch, smell and hearing during our ‘I’m a Maple, get me out of here’ sensory challenge!!