• 2014 Reading

Attendance and Punctuality

At North Durham Academy we aim to support individuals of all abilities and aspirations to fulfil their potential through learning.

We are happy to help you resolve any issues there may be affecting your child's attendance, please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss the support we can offer.

What You Can Do To Support Your Child

What the Law States

Family Holidays in Term Time

Medical Information and Guidance



What You Can Do To Support Your Child

You can help prevent your child missing school by:

  • making sure they understand the importance of good attendance and punctuality;
  • taking an interest in their education - ask about school work and encourage them to get involved in school activities;

  • discussing any problems they may have at the Academy - inform their Year Manager about anything serious;
  • not letting them take time off school for minor ailments, particularly those which would not prevent you from going to work; and
  • arranging appointments and outings after school hours, at weekends or during school holidays will help to prevent disruption to your child’s education and to the school.


What the Law States

As a parent/carer, you’re legally responsible for making sure that your child attends the Academy regularly unless you’re home-educating.  Parents/carers must ensure that a reason for absence is reported to school on the first day of absence, ideally before 9.30am, and every day of absence, this can be done by either:

A letter confirming the reason for absence must be sent on your child’s return to the Academy.


Family Holidays in Term Time

Time lost by children and young people due to family holidays taken in term time can be disruptive to their education.

We advise that wherever possible, absence from school should be avoided as it can have a serious effect on your child’s educational progress, and can create difficulties for them on their return to school. Many parents say that the time their child misses because of a holiday doesn’t affect their school work. However a child who has 10 days holiday each year of their school life will miss 24 weeks (nearly a full school year) of their formal education. This is in addition to absences – for instance, if your child is ill. If, after serious consideration of this, you still propose to take your child away from school for a holiday, it is important to note that in line with government guidelines, North Durham Academy will not agree to leave of absence unless there are exceptional circumstances.

Requests for the following reasons are not considered to be exceptional circumstances;

  • Availability of cheap holidays
  • Availability of desired accommodation
  • Poor weather experienced in school holiday periods
  • Overlapping with beginning or end of term

Where children have unauthorised absences in term time, legal action may be taken against each parent under the following legislation:

Section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996 provides that a parent commits an offence if his or her child, being of compulsory school age, fails to attend regularly the school at which he or she is a registered pupil. Section 444A allows for a penalty notice to be issued to parents who commit such an offence.

Failure to pay may result in prosecution where on conviction you would be liable to a fine of up to £1000

If you wish to discuss this further please contact our Attendance Manager, Mrs Mathwin on 01207 292180/07780 431890

365 days in a calendar year…

175 days not in school!

All this time for holidays and appointments.

90% attendance is like having a day off every two weeks

Parents and carers are by far the most important influence on children’s lives and learning and it is parents and carers who are responsible for making sure their child is educated.

Lateness = Lost Learning

*(Figures below are calculated over a school year)

5 minutes late each day

3 days lost!

10 minutes late each day

6.5 days lost!

15 minutes late each day

10 days lost!

20 minutes late each day

13 days lost!

30 minutes late each day

19 days lost!

If your child’s attendance is poor, their Year Manager may contact you to offer advice. If appropriate our Attendance Manager, Mrs Mathwin, may visit you to help you get your child back to school. Mrs Mathwin can be contacted on 07780 431890.

Your child should be aiming for at least 95% attendance.

Term dates are available here.

Medical Information and Guidance

Hand Foot and Mouth, Warts, Verrucae and Athletes Foot

Students can attend school. Verrucae should be covered in changing rooms.

Head Lice

There is no reason for students with head lice to be absent from school.  Treatment can be obtained from any pharmacy and all  family members should be treated

Whooping Cough

Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school five days after starting antibiotics. Non-infectious coughing may last for many weeks.


Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school the day after treatment is complete. Others at home MUST also be treated even if they do not have any symptoms.

Coughs and Colds

Students should be given paracetamol, plenty of fluids to drink, and can be sent to school. If your child is asthmatic, remember they may need their blue inhaler more often.

Flu and Swine Flu

Students should return to school once their temperature has returned to normal. 48 hours is the normal time span for this.

Sore Throat, Tonsillitis and Glandular Fever

Students should be given paracetamol, plenty of fluids to drink, and can be sent to school.

High Temperature

Give paracetamol and plenty to drink.  After taking paracetamol, if your child is feeling better, bring them into school. If your child’s high temperature continues for two days or more, seek medical advice.

Headache, Earache and Stomach Ache

Students with headache, earache or stomach ache can attend school. Give paracetamol and plenty of fluids to drink.  Please inform their Year Manager that they feel unwell.  If the pain persists seek medical advice.

Sickness and Diarrhoea

Students should return to school the day after the last episode of vomiting or diarrhoea.


Students return to  school when their lesions are crusted or healed, or two days after starting antibiotics.


There is no reason to keep a child off school  if they have threadworms. Seek medical treatment and ensure good personal hygiene is followed.  Others at home MUST also be treated even if they do not have any symptoms.

German Measles

Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school four days after the rash has developed. If your child has German Measles please let the school know as pregnant members of staff may be affected.


Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school four days after the rash has started.

Chicken Pox

Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school when the blisters have crusted over (usually about five to six days after the appearance of the rash).


Diagnosed by GP.  Students can return to school five days from the appearance of the swollen glands.


Diagnosed by GP.  Students can attend school with conjunctivitis.  They should be encouraged to wash their hands regularly to prevent further spread of the infection.


Students taking prescribed medication can still attend the academy.  Please take the medication to Student Services where staff will advise you on the authorisation process for the school to administer it to your child.  Please ensure that it is contained in the bottle or box in which it was prescribed.