Parents & Carers

Attendance and Punctuality

´´Teaching is good and improving´´ Ofsted

Attendance and Punctuality

Good attendance means being in school at least 97% of the time. Since the start of the 2015/16 academic year, a student has been classified as a persistent absentee if they miss 10 per cent or more of their own possible sessions, rather than if they reach a standard threshold of absence sessions. Meaning that if an enrolment’s overall absence rate is 10 per cent or higher they will be classified as persistently absent. Fixed Penalty Notices will continue to be issued by the Local Authority to parents/carers who take their children out of school for an unauthorised period of leave.

Good school attendance is imperative to provide the tools your child needs to develop and learn. Research shows that even short breaks from school can reduce a student’s chances of succeeding at school by as much as a quarter. This research, based on extensive student absence figures in both GCSE and primary school test results, highlights the importance of student’s regular attendance at school in order to prepare them for the qualifications needed to succeed in modern Britain.

It is for this reason we expect all students to aim for 100% attendance. However, there may be times when your child has to miss school because they are too ill to attend. Therefore, we realistically expect a minimum attendance of 97% (in line with the national average). In order to achieve this, a student can only have a maximum of 5 days’ absence in the whole academic year i.e. from 6 September 2016 until 21 July 2017.

Time spent away from school, whether for a family holiday or minor illness disrupts the structured school terms. Every day at school counts enormously for students but so does every consecutive day attended. Students need to absorb new facts and knowledge, acquire new skills and consolidate those skills before building further and progressing.

Students are expected to be in school from 8:20am to start their VMG promptly at 8:30am.  If your child arrives late to school (after 8:30am) please make sure that they know how to get to the main school entrance as external gates are locked promptly.

To inform school of any absence please contact the Attendance Office directly on 01423 554087 or via Reception on 01423 548800 Option4.


For any queries regarding your child’s attendance, please contact:

Mrs Lesley Reid

Attendance Manager

Direct Dial: 01423 554087

Mobile: 07960597111


Remember: all absence, whether authorised or unauthorised leads to gaps in learning!  Think twice – every day counts!

Attendance data

To drive up standards across all schools, the Government has changed the threshold for Persistent Absence (PA). As this table shows, Harrogate High School has consistently beaten the national average for secondary schools.  The latest threshold for PA is 10% of the student’s possible sessions. For students enrolling at the start of an academic year, PA equates to 12 days’ absence by the start of the Easter Holiday. For students enrolling mid-year, this figure would be lower.  

As a school we celebrate and reward excellent and improving attendance.

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