Attendance and Absence

Regular attendance is vitally important and all the research shows that good attendance (higher than 96%) is linked to good progress and attainment. Parents clearly have a responsibility to ensure that their child attends regularly and to support both students and parents. Good attendance will be rewarded with certificates each term. We will contact you expressing concern if your child’s attendance drops below 96%. From this point your child’s attendance will be monitored closely by their form tutor and Head of Year. Should it fall below 90% we may involve Erin Clarke, our school-based social worker, and if appropriate we would then refer to the Dorset Attendance team who have a legal duty to monitor attendance. Our Attendance Strategy can be found here.

Planned absence

In view of the above, absences will only be authorised in exceptional circumstances.  All other requests (including all holiday requests) are likely to be refused and any absence marked as unauthorised.  Please notify us of planned absence via the Parent Gateway, or by writing to your child’s Head of Year.  Full details on how to access the Parent Gateway will follow in due course.


Good punctuality is important in all walks of life and we expect all students to arrive by 8.45 am every morning for their registration, apart from assembly mornings when students need to be in the hall no later than 8.40am.

If a student arrives at school after registration for any reason, then they must report to the reception, explain the reason for the lateness and sign in. This will be recorded on a page in the logbook for our records. Frequent lateness is viewed with the same seriousness as poor attendance and students will receive detentions for frequent lateness. Our Punctuality Strategy can be found here.

Leaving early

If a student needs to leave the school during the day, for whatever reason, then they must sign out at the reception. Students will only be able to do this if a note has been put in their log book by the parent.


If a student is feeling ill during the school day, they should ask permission to visit the medical room, where one of our medical team will see them and then decide the best course of action.

What should I do when my son/daughter is absent?

  • Please inform the school preferably via the Parent Gateway on the first day of absence, no later than 10am.  If you do not have access to this, please telephone the school absence line on 01202 495778.
  • If your child remains unwell then we ask that you contact the school again on the third day of absence, again via the Parent Gateway or absence line.
  • If you know in advance that your child needs to be absent (e.g. for a medical or dental appointment) then please do let us know via the Parent Gateway or absence line.
  • If you have been unable to contact the school to explain your child’s absence, then please write a note in their log book and ask your child should to show this to his/her form tutor on their return.

What will the school do?

If your child is absent and we have not heard from you then our year office secretary will either send a text to your mobile number or telephone you at home.