Strategies for improving attendance

Use our practical tips to help tackle poor attendance in your school. While these aren't intended to be a quick fix, you can put most of them into practice without overhauling your whole strategy.

Last reviewed on 22 April 2024See updates
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  1. Start by analysing your attendance data
  2. Focus your attention where it’s needed most
  3. Get all staff working together to promote good attendance
  4. Remind your community that good attendance is everyone's responsibility
  5. Give pupils a purpose to be in school each day
  6. Proactively manage lateness and internal truancy

Start by analysing your attendance data

Make sure you fully understand the situation in your school before you start taking steps to improve it. Find out how to analyse your attendance and absence data in 3 steps.

Identify and anticipate flashpoints in the school year

Use your attendance data to notice where attendance is likely to drop, such as around school holidays and during exam periods. 

Ahead of those flashpoints, reiterate the importance of attendance to parents/carers and pupils through clear, proactive communication. Remind them of the support in place if they're worried about exams, and of the consequences of taking term-time holidays, including fines as well as missing out on important lessons. 

Focus your attention where it’s needed most

But remember: while whole-school approaches are important, you should target the majority

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