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School attendance

Parents must make sure their child receives an education

Parents must make sure their child receives an education from the beginning of the term after their 5th birthday to the last Friday in June in the school year in which they have their 16th birthday.

Usually parents and carers enrol their child in a school, or make suitable provision for Elective Home Education.

The Education Welfare Service (EWS) fulfils Somerset County Council’s statutory responsibility in making sure children access their full entitlement to education. The EWS will investigate where it is identified that any child is missing from education.

In Somerset, Education Welfare Officers (EWOs) are responsible for carrying out these duties. Each school in Somerset has a named officer who you can contact through the school.

Penalty notices are issued by Somerset County Council, at the request of schools, to the parents of children who have missed school without permission, including where unauthorised term-time leave is taken.

Schools keep a register of school attendance for every child. The decision whether or not to authorise the absence is the responsibility of the headteacher, in line with their attendance policy. If you believe they have made a mistake in the register please contact the school.

You can find more information about school attendance and children missing education on the County Council website.

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