Attendance is of paramount importance at Sayes Court School. Children need to attend school regularly in order to make good progress and become successful learners. The school aim is to maintain attendance at 96.5% and above. Children across the whole school are aware of how important attending school regularly is and there are a range of incentives to promote excellent attendance.

Holidays / Leave of Absence in Term Time and Penalty Notices

Holiday term times can be found on the School’s website.  Sayes Court has a two week Autumn half term break which we hope will help you to book a holiday when prices are a little cheaper.  We strongly recommend that parent/carers DO NOT book their family holidays during term time as these will not be authorised and may incur a Penalty Notice being issued.    

Absence from school can seriously disrupt your child’s continuity of learning.  Not only do they miss the teaching provided on the days they are away, they are also less well prepared for lessons upon their return.  There is a consequent risk of under-achievement.  Above all, missing school seriously affects children’s longer term life opportunities.

Sayes Court will not authorize holidays or leave of absence in term times, except in exceptional circumstances determined by the Head Teacher.  Evidence will be sought to substantiate exceptional circumstances.  Should a parent wish to apply for any leave of absence within term time then this must be made in writing to the Head Teacher at least two weeks in advance.  An ‘Application for Leave of Absence’ form can be obtained from the school office.  If holidays or absence are taken, without prior authorisation, the child’s absence will be recorded as unauthorised in the school register and you may still incur a Penalty Notice.

Holidays which are requested for the following reasons will not be authorized:


  • Availability of cheap holidays
  • Availability of the desired accommodation
  • Poor weather experienced in school holiday periods
  • Overlap with beginning or end of term
  • Visiting family abroad
  • Change of transport dates


On the advice of the Education Welfare Service if any parent requests extended leave of absence of more than 4 weeks to visit their home country then the school will take their child’s name off-roll and the parent will have to re-apply for a place when they return.  There is no guarantee, in this instance,  that a place will be available.

The Education Welfare Service, acting on behalf of Surrey County Council,  may issue a Penalty Notice as an alternative to the prosecution of  parent(s)/carer(s) for their child(ren)’s unauthorised absence from school, and requires the recipient(s) to pay a fixed amount.

The amount payable on issue of a Penalty Notice is £60 per parent/carer per child if paid within 21 days of receipt of the Notice, rising to £120 per parent/carer per child if paid after 21 days but within 28 days.  If the Penalty Notice is not paid within 28 days, the Local Authority must prosecute the parent(s)/carer(s) for failing to ensure regular school attendance under Section 444 Education Act 1996



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