Latest statistics for spring term 2010 show a decrease in overall absence rates in both primary and secondary schools compared to spring term 2009. This follows decreases in spring 2008 and spring 2009.
Authorised absence rates decreased in both primary and secondary schools. Unauthorised absence rates increased in primary schools and decreased in secondary schools.
Schools minister Nick Gibb said:
The small fall in the overall absence rate in all schools, and in unauthorised absence in secondary schools, in spring term 2010 is very welcome, but the level of absenteeism in schools is still too high.
The Government has committed to tackling the underlying causes of absenteeism, raising academic standards and ensuring every child can meet their potential, regardless of their background. It’s crucial that children are not missing out on valuable lessons that could leave them vulnerable to falling behind. We are putting in place a series of measure to raise standards of behaviour, to put head teachers and teachers back in control of the classroom, and to get tougher on parents and pupils who do not abide by the rules.
We are also introducing the first ever pupil premium to provide additional funding for more disadvantaged pupils so that they benefit from the same opportunities as their more affluent peers. We need to ensure that all pupils have the basic skills of reading, writing and maths before they reach secondary school.