A smooth and punctual start to the day is very important for children. The school doors are opened at 8.45am in preparation for the start of the day at 8.55am. If a child arrives at school after this time they must report to the school office where parents are asked to sign them in the late book. 


If your child is ill you should let the school know as soon as possible. You can report absence on the school’s dedicated absence line, by the Parentmail app or in person. Please let us know when your child is likely to return to school and ring every day of your child’s absence unless you advise us initially of the length of time they will be absent for.

The school follows Public Health guidelines so there may be occasions when your child must stay away from school in line with these guidelines. If your child is sick or has diarrhoea, they must not return to school until 48 hours after the last bout of vomiting or diarrhoea. This is to ensure the infection does  not spread to other children. If your child is sick or has diarrhoea at school we will ring you and ask you to come and collect your child.

If we feel that your child is not well enough to come to school we reserve the right to ask you to come and collect your child.


If your child requires medication, this can normally be arranged with your GP for it to be given out of school hours. If it is required in school time, staff will give this on a voluntary basis. Please note we can only give prescribed medication, not Calpol or Nurofen; the only exception to this is on residential trips with written consent has been given.

We will require your written consent and details of the medication to be given. You can download the form here or complete it at the school office:

Medication consent form.doc 

Please see the Supporting children with Medical needs (including Administration of Medicines) policy for further information.


At Thistly Meadow we work hard to minimise our rates of authorised and unauthorised absences. If a child is absent from school parents/carers should contact the school and inform us by 9:30am by telephone or in person. For the safety of your child if we have not received a call by 9:30am we will contact you using the contact details on the school records.Therefore please make sure the school office have your correct details, particularly mobile phone numbers as these change more often. Every Friday the school administration officer checks the registers and follows up any children who are late or absent without reasons, with a letter.

Our Attendance Improvement Officer (AIO), Cecily Henry, works with parents to ensure good levels of attendance are maintained. If a child’s attendance is giving cause for concern she will contact the child’s parents/carers to ensure the child’s attendance level improves and support the family to maintain this on an ongoing basis.

Every child’s attendance pattern is monitored and if we notice a change in pattern or a fall in attendance, this will be followed up by the school and the AIO may be involved. The school’s attendance target is 97%. All children whose attendance falls below 90% will automatically be referred to the AIO. There is a great deal of current research regarding achievement which clearly shows that even quite low levels of absence have a negative impact on learning.

Changes to the authorisation of term time holidays

Following changes to government regulations, Head teachers are no longer allowed to grant leave of absence for the purpose of holidays during term time. From the start of the new academic year 2013 the amendments make it clear that Head teachers may not grant any leave of absence for holidays during term time.  Please see the letters below for further information:

changes to holiday absence letter.pdf 

AIO letter family holidays - Dec 2013.pdf 

At the present time penalty notices will not be automatically issued except when the child falls into one of the categories below:

1) A child has low attendance (the school will take into account the previous academic year).

2) A child is already subject to attendance improvement support by the Attendance Improvement Officer.

3) Further unauthorised absence is taken following previously unauthorised absence.

It is hoped that parents will take serious consideration of the information outlined above and avoid taking holidays in term time.


Thank you for your support.