Attendance at School

Truancy Penalty Notices

Parents are legally responsible for ensuring that their children regularly attend the school at which they are registered. 

Unfortunately, some children fail to attend school regularly. The Local Authority has a number of legal powers, under Section 23 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 to address this issue. The Act allows the authority to issue Truancy Penalty Notices (also known as Fixed Penalty Notice) to parents whose children fail to attend school regularly.

Further information can be found by clicking the links below:


There is much research that shows a strong correlation between high attendance and high attainment for all children. A  publication from the Department for Education (PDF, 675.27KB, 10 pages) indicated that even missing a short amount of time from school can reduce every pupil’s chance of securing the grades they are capable of achieving.

Parents/carers must comply with Section 444 of the Education Act 1996 that states that:

“(1) If a child of compulsory school age who is a registered pupil at a school fails to attend regularly at the school, his parent is guilty of an offence.”            

“(1A) If in the circumstances mentioned in subsection (1) the parent knows that his child is failing to attend regularly at the school and fails without reasonable justification to cause him to do so, he is guilty of an offence.”


View further information regarding school attendance regulations on the Department for Education's (DfE) website.