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Handford Hall Primary School

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At Orwell Multi Academy Trust, we expect all children to be in school every day, unless they are too ill to attend. Term time holiday will not be authorised and will result in a fine. Unauthorised absence will result in legal intervention.

Every school in the Trust has staff who can support you with your child’s attendance, so we ask that you work with us to ensure that your child is in school, on time, every day.

At Handford Hall, we expect all children to arrive on time at 8.40am (gates open at 8.30am and close at 8.40am) and attend every day. Children have only 190 school days in a year, and we believe that each one is important. Evidence shows there is a clear link between poor school attendance/punctuality and low levels of achievement. We expect all individual pupils to achieve at least 97% attendance. Children who arrive late not only miss a vital part of the day but also disturb the learning of the rest of the class.


Parents/carers have a responsibility to notify the school on the first day of absence.  A reason for absence must be provided and an expected return date. Please inform a member of office staff or leave a message on the school answer phone. This should be followed up with a written explanation along with suitable evidence handed to the school office i.e. an appointment letter, a doctor’s note, a copy of a prescription or a label of medication.


In cases where a written explanation has not been provided, the absence may be unauthorised, and a letter will be sent to you. Unauthorised means the school is not satisfied with the reason of absence provided.

It is essential that all appointments such as routine check-ups or a visit to the dentist, optician or GP are booked out of school hours or in the holiday periods to avoid missing crucial learning time. If your child has any upcoming hospital appointments and you are required to collect them please ensure you notify the school office beforehand and minimise this absence by taking as little time away as possible. Evidence will need to be provided for any hospital appointments in the school day.


We do not authorise holidays taken during term time and any absence/(s) taken for this reason will be marked as unauthorised. Unauthorised means the school is not satisfied with the reason of absence provided. If your child is persistently absent or overall has low attendance he/she risks their place being given to another pupil and you will need to complete a special leave request form at the school office to notify us of a leave such as this.


The school will refer pupils to the Education School Attendance Officer if there is a cause for concern about unauthorised absence/(s) and/or lateness. In most circumstances each liable parent/carer will receive a formal warning which will lead to a Fixed Penalty Notice of £60 being issued or further action being taken if the absenteeism persists.

The school and the Local Authority work closely together to ensure that all pupils attend school regularly and arrive on time and we hope that you will also support us in ensuring that your child receives their full educational entitlement.


If you have any enquiries or concerns regarding your child’s attendance or punctuality please inform your child’s class teacher or a member of the school leadership team and we will do all we can to support you.



Recommended period to be kept away from school (once child is well)




For five days from onset of rash

It is not necessary to wait until spots have healed or crusted

Cold sores








Many healthy children and adults excrete this virus at some time without having a ‘sore’ (herpes simplex virus)


German measles








Five days from onset of rash







The child is most infectious before the diagnosis is made and most children should be immune to immunisation so that exclusion after the rash appears will prevent very few cases





Hand, foot and    mouth disease




Usually a mild disease not justifying time off school.







Until lesions are crusted or healed




Antibiotic treatment by mouth may speed healing. If lesions can reliably be kept covered exclusion may be shortened





Five days from onset of rash

Measles is now  rare in the UK.


Molluscum  contagiosum


A mild condition

Ringworm (Tinea)






Proper treatment by the GP is important.  Scalp ringworm needs treatment with an antifungal  by mouth





A mild illness,    usually caught from well persons










Until treated








Outbreaks have occasionally occurred in schools and nurseries.  Child can return as soon as properly treated. This should include all the persons in the household.





Scarlet fever


Five days from child commencing antibiotics

Treatment recommended for the affected.


Slapped cheek or    Fifth disease (Parvovirus)





Exclusion is Ineffective as nearly all transmission takes place before the child becomes unwell.


Warts and verrucae




Affected children    may go swimming but verrucae should be covered

Diarrhoea and/or    vomiting (with or without a specified diagnosis)








Until diarrhoea and vomiting has settled (neither for the previous 24 hours)






Usually there will be no specific diagnosis and for most conditions there is no specific treatment.  A longer period of exclusion may be appropriate for children under age 5 and older children unable to maintain good personal hygiene.





E-coli and    Haemolytic Uraemic Syndrome



Depends on the type of E-coli seek FURTHER ADVICE from the CCDC







Until diarrhoea has settled for the previous 24 hours)



There is a    specific antibiotic treatment








Until diarrhoea and vomiting has settled (neither for the previous 24 hours)

If the child is under five years or has difficulty in personal hygiene, seek advice from the Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.


Shigella   (Bacillary dysentery)






Until diarrhoea has settled (for the previous 24 hours)





If the child is under five years or had difficulty in personal hygiene, seek advice from the Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.




Flu (Influenza)




Flu is most    infectious just before and at the onset of symptoms





CCDC will advise




Generally requires quite prolonged, close contact for spread on action.  Not usually spread from children.


Whooping cough (Pertussis)





Five days from commencing antibiotic treatment



Treatment (usually with erythromycin) is recommended  though non-infectious coughing may still continue for many weeks.








If an outbreak    occurs consult Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.


Glandular fever (infectious mononucleosis)




Head lice (nits)






Treatment is    recommended only in cases where live lice have definitely been seen.


Hepatitis A











See comments











There is no justification for exclusion of well

older children with good hygiene who will have been much more infectious prior to the  diagnosis.  Exclusion is justified for  five days from the onset of jaundice or stools going pale for the under fives  or where hygiene is poor.






Meningococcal meningitis/septicaemia



The CCDC will give specific advice on any action needed

There is no    reason to exclude from schools siblings and other close contacts of a case


Meningitis not  due to Meningococcal infection



Once the child is    well infection risk is minimal.






Five days from onset of swollen glands



The child is most infectious before the diagnosis is made and most children should be immune due to immunisation








Transmission is uncommon in schools but treatment is recommended for the child and family.














There are many causes, but most cases are due to viruses and do not need an antibiotic.  For one cause, streptococcal infection, antibiotic treatment is recommended.