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Figures for school attendance break records

Figures published on 15 October 2014 show that there are fewer pupils persistently missing lessons than ever before, with more pupils regularly attending school since comparable records began in 2006.

Ensuring pupils regularly attend school is important to ensuring pupils' success both at school and in later life.

The figures for the autumn and spring terms of the 2013 to 2014 academic year show that:

  • 176,850 fewer pupils persistently missed school than in 2009 to 2010, from 439,105 to 262,255;
  • 10.1 million fewer school days were lost to absence than in 2009 to 2010, from 45.8 million to 35.7 million;
  • the overall rate of absence has dropped by more than a quarter since 2009 to 2010, from six per cent to 4.4 per cent; and
  • the number of pupils missing lessons for holidays has dropped by almost a third since last year. 1.3 million fewer school days were lost to term-time holidays - from 3.3 million last year to 2.5 million this year.
If a pupil was persistently absent - defined as missing around 15 per cent or more of school time - for their whole school career, then they would have lost around 18 months of lesson time, severely damaging their chance to fulfil their potential.

Download the report Pupil absence in schools in England: autumn 2013 and spring 2014 here.

Page Published: 21/10/2014