At Dartington C of E Primary and Nursery School we are committed to providing an inspiring, full and broad educational experience for all pupils.  We recognise the clear links between the progress pupils make in their learning and good, punctual attendance.  This enables children to establish themselves within their school community securely, to learn within expected routines and to make connections across all their learning.

Start of the day

  • Key Stage One and Two (Years One to Six): 8:50 am
  • F2 (Reception): 8:45 am
  • F1 (Nursery): 9:00 am

As a school we do all that we can to ensure maximum and punctual attendance for all pupils.  Any problems that are a barrier are identified and addressed as speedily as possible working in partnership with parents and carers and supported by the Education Welfare Service.

Guidelines suggest that a child should be able to attend school sessions which represent at least 95% attendance, allowing for the usual coughs and colds, and this is our expectation for all pupils.

At Dartington we hold monthly meetings with our Education Welfare Officer to review attendance across the school looking at low attendance, poor attendance patterns such as disrupted weeks, lateness and reasons for absence.

Actions that follow are varied and might include a conversation with the class teacher, a meeting, a phone call, a letter, a home visit or a legal response if there has been previous dialogue and improvement has not been made.

Where a child has had 20 sessions of medical absence (the equivalent of ten days)  within a school year or across a six month  period medical evidence might be required in order to authorise further medical  absences.


Children should not be kept off school for vague symptoms such as tiredness or headache. However, a child who is obviously unwell at the beginning of the day should not be sent to school. In consideration of your own child and others:

  • Please do not send your child to school within 48 hours of the last occasion of vomiting and/or diarrhoea.
  • Please do not send your child with any infectious diseases even if they seem well – any child with impetigo or conjunctivitis will be sent home, although once treatment for conjunctivitis has begun they are able to attend.

Parents will be contacted through their designated contact number should their child become ill during the day.

Absence - what to do

If your child is absent it is important that you telephone or email the school office before 10.00 am on the first day of absence or that you follow the absence with a dated explanatory note covering the dates of the absence.

Absence slips can be obtained from the school office for parents to complete and sign as a swift alternative. They can also be printed from our website.

Where a reason for an absence is not provided within five working days this will be marked as Unauthorised. Unauthorised absences are discussed with the Education Welfare Officer during regular meetings with the school and can result in prosecution and fines.

Absence Requests

Requests for absence during term time can only be made where a situation is exceptional and unavoidable.

For further details please see the school’s Attendance Policy and Attendance Flow Chart or download an absence slip attached to this page, along with the contact for our Education Welfare Officer, Ruth Barnett on 01392 287223.