Newton Longville Church of England

Primary School

“Celebrating all that we are and all that we can be”

Late/Absence Procedures


Morning Registration is between 08.55am and 9.00am

Afternoon Registration is between 1.00pm and 1.05pm


Each class teacher, or their nominated representative, is responsible for marking children present in the electronic register at morning and afternoon registration. The registers must be completed promptly to avoid discrepancies between classes. The class teacher must ensure that the marked register, plus any notes received regarding absence, is submitted to the school office by 9.05am/1.10pm.


Late Registration Pupils requiring admittance to school following registration periods must go to the main entrance and request entry via the school office. The school office is responsible for maintaining the signing in/out book. This must contain details of name, class, time admitted/time released, reason for lateness/early departure and name of supervising adult. For health and safety reasons, after 9.00am/1.05pm an entry MUST be placed in the signing in book before a late pupil is admitted or released.


In accordance with current guidance, the attendance registers are closed at 9.30am. This means that any pupil who arrives after the registration period (8.55 to 9.00am) but before the registers are closed (9.30am) will be given a late mark (L) in the register. This code is classed as a present mark, but displays that the pupil arrived late for school. Any pupil who arrives after the registers have closed (9.30am) but before the end of the morning session will be given a "late after registers closed" mark (U) in the register. This code is classed as an unauthorised absence but displays that the pupil was physically present in school for part of the session.


In addition to using the L and U codes, office staff may also use the facility within the SIMS attendance module to record the number of minutes late for each pupil, on each occasion. This facility will allow school staff to monitor and manage developing patterns of lateness more effectively and make a clear link between lateness and missed curriculum; and share such information with parents.


The fact that the U code is classed as an unauthorised absence means that when it is used pupils are likely to be missing significant amounts of schooling; putting their educational progress at risk. For this reason the use of this code will be considered as serious as any other unauthorised absence and will attract the interest of external agencies, including referral to the local authority attendance team and consideration of the use of legal measures, in just the same way. Authorised and Unauthorised Absence In every instance it is the Headteacher who determines whether an absence is recorded as authorised or unauthorised. This decision is made based on information provided by parents/carers. However, because the register is a legal document, the Headteacher has responsibility to ensure that it is completed accurately and in accordance with the legislation. For this reason it is not sufficient for an absence to be recorded as authorised based entirely on information provided by parents/carers. Therefore, there may be occasions when it will be necessary for parents to provide evidence of reasons for absence before authorisation is granted. For example, in the case of absence due to illness or medical appointment, evidence may be requested in the form of: sight of a prescription, prescribed medication, a medical appointment card or similar.


The school office is responsible for maintaining records of reason and length of absence.


Parents/Carers are required to contact the school office or class teacher on the first day of absence, advising of the reason for the absence and expected return date; if known


  • Where information is provided to the class teacher they are responsible for passing this information to the school office.
  • Where a verbal message is taken by school office staff this should be noted in the register and the class teacher informed.
  • Where a written note is received by the class teacher this should be returned to the school office with the register.
  • Where the absence is for several days, the Parent/Carer is responsible for informing the school office of the continued absence and updating them as to the reason for the absence on a regular basis.
  • Where the absence is for several days without explanation, or the reason provided is unsatisfactory, the absence will be recorded as unauthorised and will be addressed with parents promptly. Schools have a responsibility to report such absence to the Local Authority after a period of 10 school days, or sooner if appropriate.
  • The reason for absence should be linked directly to the pupil (e.g. illness or medical appointment of/for the child). Reasons for absence relating to parents or siblings may not be authorised.


If a child is absent and no contact has been made by the family, the school office will contact the family on the first day of absence, as the registers close at 9.30am. If contact cannot be made the Headteacher should be informed and, in the case of prolonged or repeated absence without justification being given, the Headteacher will determine whether a referral to the Pupil Attendance Support Team should be made.


The Headteacher is responsible for determining what is classed as authorised and what is classed as unauthorised absence.