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Important Attendance Message for parents and carers

Dear Parent/Carer

At Thomas Clarkson Academy we thrive to ensure all of our students achieve the best possible outcomes.

We also recognise that the vast majority of you support your child’s attendance and would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support.

It is acknowledged that attendance has a direct impact upon achievement, success and welfare. Strong evidence shows that where any individual pupils’ attendance percentage is below 97% it will have a detrimental effect on their achievement, becoming increasingly damaging as their attendance percentage becomes lower.

It can also impact upon welfare and standards of conduct, where a pupil’s low attendance leads to them falling behind in their learning and subsequently to further disengaging from learning when in school. Non-attendance is one of the single biggest blocks to achievement and to the school carrying out its function in safeguarding the welfare of children. Whether absence is due to term-time holidays, illnesses or truancy, not being present at school disadvantages children.

Please see table below;


Image result for school attendance percentage affects grades table

Please also find below and attached a letter from Cambridgeshire County Council providing more background information to support our message.

Yours faithfully

Mark Taylor

Associate Vice Principal PDBW


Dear Parents / Carers,

The Local Authority and all schools in Cambridgeshire want children in the county to have the best possible educational outcomes. We are reviewing all areas of how schools perform to ensure that this aspiration is met.

In line with government expectations, the Local Authority firmly believes that for pupils to progress and achieve their full potential they need to have a good level of school attendance. Regular school attendance gives your child the best possible start in life from the time they start in reception. Children who frequently miss school are far more likely to fall behind with their work across the curriculum, and thus fail to reach their true potential.

Children who arrive late at school, after the attendance register is closed, are deemed to be absent from school. Therefore, it is equally important for children not to be late for registration. Missing 10 minutes a day equates to 6.3 days of school lost over the year.

In Cambridgeshire the attendance data for the academic year 2016/2017 shows that there were 3201 primary school aged pupils and 3217 secondary school aged pupils who were persistently absent from school (i.e. they attended school less than 90% of the time). To address this all schools in the county have put in place robust attendance management strategies and will make a referral to the Local Authority where attendance fails to improve.

The Government also encourages local authorities to use enforcement action to address irregular school attendance, unauthorised term-time leave, including family holidays taken during term time and late arrival at school. Where necessary and appropriate we will issue Penalty Notice fines and pursue prosecutions through the Magistrate’s Court.

I realise that the vast majority of parents support their child’s attendance at school as they recognise the significant impact this can have on their child’s education and their life chances. We hope you will continue to support us by not planning a leave of absence during term time and ensuring your child attends regularly and is not late for school.

Further details on school attendance can be found here -

Yours sincerely

Jonathan Lewis,

Service Director - Education , Cambridgeshire County Council