Welcome to Westlands School attendance information. This page is designed to give you a quick overview of attendance here at Westlands. For more in-depth information please go to the specific attendance policy or contact the attendance team. Their details are at the bottom of this section. 

Studies have shown that frequent absence from school can have a serious negative impact on your child’s education.

Students who have 90% attendance think this is good – their parents also think this is good. Unfortunately, 90% attendance is the equivalent of one half-day off every week!

Westlands School expects every student to have at least 96% attendance. We want all our students to achieve their full potential and to progress into their chosen career. Barriers such as poor attendance will hinder, delay or stop their progress.

Your child should be in school by 8.30am every day as lessons start at 8.35am. Any student arriving at school after 8.35am is deemed late and a detention will be given at lunchtime. If a student arrives after 8.45am an after-school detention will be issued. If a pupil arrives after 9.30am this will be marked as an absence, and a U code given. Continued lateness to school will result in a referral to SEAAS for a monitoring period and may result in a fixed penalty notice or a fine.

Important to realise

Westlands School wants to celebrate pupils with strong attendance. Pupils who constantly achieve strong attendance will be automatically awarded positive behaviour points on our Bromcom system. Pupils with 100% attendance in a term will be awarded a certificate and entered into termly prize draws in their year group assemblies. Pupils should be proud of their attendance. You will receive an attendance report with every progress report. If you want to know more about your child's attendance data, please contact the attendance team. 

Please note:

There are 190 school days a year - that leaves 175 days for:

  • Family holidays
  • Shopping trips
  • Medical appointments
  • Household jobs
  • Visiting family and friends

Academic Research shows that: 

  • Pupils with 99-100% attendance are 1.3 times more likely to achieve grade 4 or above, and 3.1 times more likely to achieve grade 5 or above in their GCSEs, than pupils that missed 10-15% of all sessions
  • Pupils with 99-100% attendance are 2.2 times more likely to achieve 5+ GCSEs grade 9 to 4 or equivalent including English and mathematics than pupils that missed 15-20% of Key Stage 4 lessons. 
  • A 90% attendance for a student from Year 7 to Year 11 is the equivalent of missing 100 school days, or 20 weeks, or 3 terms, or half a year! Educational studies have shown that frequent absence from school can have a serious negative impact on your child’s education. For every 10% loss of education, there is a risk that your child’s achievement may fall by a whole grade. Low attendance is the biggest factor in underachievement.  


Medical Appointments

Please can parents/carers try wherever possible to arrange medical appointments outside of school time. If this is not possible then please can we request that students do not take the whole day off. We will also ask that you provide appointment documentation in order for the absence to be authorised.

Attendance Reporting for Parents

As a school we have a duty to ensure that all students attend regularly to achieve their full potential. The school sets a level of 96% attendance for every student, which is endorsed by the Department for Education, Ofsted and the Local Authority.

If a pupil’s attendance drops below 96% it is brought to the attention of the SEAAS Attendance Advisor who supports attendance at Westlands School. They will liaise with you and your child’s Community in order to encourage good attendance.

We normally authorise up to 5 days of absence per academic year, if parents have informed us of a just reason why their child is off. Further absences may be authorised, providing medical documentation is provided to support the reason for absence. If we are not informed of absences, you will be contacted to ascertain the reason why. Unauthorised absence marks will be given for all absences we are not made aware of. We encourage parents to make daily contact to inform us of continued absences.

Parents informing us of an absence due to illness does not automatically guarantee the absence will be authorised. This will be determined by the school, depending on the current attendance levels and whether medical evidence has been provided. We do not require letters from GPs, but any appointment letters and/or cards or prescribed medicine labels will be acceptable.


No holidays during term-time will be authorised. We expect parents to notify us if they have booked a holiday, using the Leave of Absence Form. This form will need to be downloaded from the school’s website, completed fully and returned to the Attendance Office at least 3 weeks prior to the holiday taking place. This will then be passed onto the Headteacher and you will be contacted by the Attendance Officer with the Headteacher’s response. You will find the form at the bottom of this page. If there are exceptional circumstances the Headteacher may agree to authorise the absence, but this is very rare.

Penalty Notices will be requested for unauthorised holidays. The fine is £60 per parent, per child to be paid to Kent County Council within 21 days. If this is not paid in the time frame, it will be increased to £120.



There are 190 school days a year - that leaves 175 days for:

  • Family holidays
  • Shopping trips
  • Medical appointments
  • Household jobs
  • Visiting family and friends

A 90% attendance from Yr 7 to 11 is the equivalent of missing...

  • 100 days, or 20 weeks, or 3 terms, or half a year!


Contact our Attendance Team

Attendance Officer - Claire Webling

Attendance Assistant - Caroline Older 

Attendance Assistant - Julie Matson 


Attendance is overseen by the Deputy Headteacher - Mrs Bethany Arculus-Pennells

You can contact our team by phoning: 
01795 477475, Option:1

Or, email our attendance office directly at