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Spring Meadow

Primary School

Aim High, Inspire, Make a Difference

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Nursery Attendance Policy

Our Nursery Attendance Policy can be downloaded here

The name and contact details of the senior leader responsible for the strategic approach to attendance in our school nursery is:

Mrs Emma Donegan


01255 504528


The name and contact details of the school staff member pupils and parents should contact about attendance on a day-to-day basis is:

Ms Sapphire Davids


01255 504528


The name and contact details of the Inclusion Team member pupils and parents should contact for more individual support with attendance

Ms Nicola Neal


01255 504528


The name and contact details of the Governor responsible for the strategic approach to attendance in our school nursery is:

Mr Andy Johnson


01255 504528


Introduction and Background


The Governors and staff at Spring Meadow Primary School and ‘School House’ Nursery are united in their belief that regular attendance is the key to enabling children to maximise the educational opportunities available to them. Helping them to become emotionally resilient, confident and competent adults who are able to realise their full potential and make a positive contribution to their community.

Although we recognise that attending nursery is not statutory, we believe good attendance is essential if children are to be settled and take full advantage of the learning and development opportunities available to them. At a young age, continuity and consistency are important contributors to a child’s well-being and progress.  We also believe that a good attendance routine at nursery sets the pattern for when they move into Foundation stage and their school journey begins.

Our Attendance Policy aims are:

  1. To create a culture where good attendance is ‘normality’ and valued.
  2. To ensure that all of our children are able to achieve their maximum potential, academically, physically, socially and emotionally. 
  3. To be consistent in the implementation of our policy and procedures.


Promoting Regular Attendance


Spring Meadow Primary School and ‘School House’ Nursery values all children. As set out in this policy we will work with families to identify the barriers to achieving and maintaining excellent attendance and offer the right service at the right time to try to resolve any difficulties. We believe in developing good patterns of attendance and set high expectations for the attendance and punctuality for all our pupils from the outset.  It is a central part of our school’s vision, values, ethos, and day to day life.  We recognise the connections between attendance, attainment, safeguarding and wellbeing.

The Attendance Senior Leader (Mrs Donegan), Safeguarding and Attendance Lead (Ms Neal)  and Attendance Officer (Ms Davids),supported by the Inclusion Team, will monitor attendance and use attendance data to identify any patterns of concern.  They will also celebrate success!  Attendance concerns will be raised with parents if the reasons are not known by the school / nursery. 


To support good attendance, and safeguarding, at Spring Meadow Primary School and ‘School House’ Nursery,  we:


  • Ensure the nursery is welcoming and every child feels a sense of belonging and connectedness.   
  • Ensure the school site is open at the stated times. 
  • Ensure the regular, efficient, and accurate recording of attendance is completed by the nursery teacher each day. This further supports our approach to safeguarding within the school.
  • Give parents/carers details on attendance in our newsletters.
  • Ensure all school holiday dates including non-pupil days are clearly marked and displayed on our school website.
  • Report to parents/carers at least annually on their child’s attendance and within the annual report.
  • Safeguarding is taken seriously and we will always contact you if you have not made contact with us regarding your child’s absence.


Spring Meadow Primary School and ‘School House’ Nursery will always work in partnership with our parents and carers

Spring Meadow Primary School and ‘School House’ Nursery recognises that poor attendance is often an indication of difficulties in a child’s life and their lived experience. This may be related to problems at home or in nursery. Parents/carers should inform the nursery of any difficulties or changes in circumstances that may affect their child’s attendance and or behaviour in nursery, for example, bereavement, divorce/separation, incidents of domestic abuse. This will help the nursery to identify any additional early help that may be required. Safeguarding is a priority, concerns for any child at any time will be reported to the Designated Senior Leads for Child Protection Ms Neal or Mrs Donegan. We will always follow Keeping Children Safe in Education 2022 and our Child Protection Policy.

Some children are more likely to require additional support to attain good attendance, for example, children who are vulnerable, have a medical need or EHCP plan will be monitored and supported in the nursery.  At Spring Meadow we will proactively identify and follow up on a child’s non-attendance and gather information about the child.  This will result in taking early action to prevent non-attendance developing and monitoring the impact of targeted support.


Absence Procedures



Absence can also be reported using the Studybugs Attendance App which is an efficient and secure system for reporting your child’s absence due to illness.  Parents can get the free Studybugs app, or register on the Studybugs website, and use it to tell us whenever their child is ill and unable to attend school.

Get the app or register now


Notification by phone

The name and contact details of the school staff member pupils and parents should contact about attendance on a day to day basis is:

Ms Sapphire Davids


01255 504528


We thoroughly monitor all absences, and the reasons that are given.



It is the responsibility of the parent/carer to notify the Nursery through Studybugs or by phone or email if their child will be absent for any reason e.g. illness, holiday, etc. If you know holidays in advance it is greatly appreciated to let us know these.

If your child attends a morning or full day session, please inform us by 8:30am of any absence or by 12:30pm for an afternoon session ideally via Studybugs. Messages of absence from parents will be passed onto the Nursery Teacher. If we haven’t heard from you a member of staff will contact you by telephone to ascertain the reason for absence. If we cannot reach you, we will leave a message and send an email. We will also keep a record of non-attendance and of our contact attempts.

If there is no contact after one week a home visit may be complete and / or a letter will be sent to the family. If necessary, an appointment will be made with the Nursery Teacher to discuss the matter. If contact cannot be made through phone calls and home visits, we do have a duty of care and therefore may refer to outside agencies based on safeguarding concerns.  If after one month the child has not attended nursery and a reasonable reason has not been shared, the child’s name will be removed from the Nursery register and the place allocated to another child on the waiting list. If you claim FEET or EYFE funding, long or regular absences may affect your entitlement. We would need to contact the Essex Early Years and Childcare Service. We would notify you when we have done this.




If a child is absent from nursery the parent / carer (or other adult living at the premises) must follow these procedures:

  • Contact the nursery on the first day of absence before 8:30am.  You can do this:
    • By using the Studybugs app
    • In person by calling in to the school office
    • By telephoning the school  (the school has an answer phone available to leave a message if nobody is available to take your call)
    • By emailing the school at attedance@springmeadow.essex.sch.uk


  • Contact the school on every further day of absence, again before 8:30am using any of the methods above
  • Contact Ms Neal (Attendance and Safeguarding Officer) if you require advice or support.
  • Ensure that your child returns to nursery as soon as possible.
  • When staff complete home visits, if they cannot make contact with you and your child, then they have the right to ask neighbours if they have seen you.  Again, this is to ensure the safety of your child.   No personal details will be shared and confidentiality will be maintained at all times. 
  • We will always work in a supportive way with all our nursery families and try to find a way to help and support getting your child into school.
  • We will create a personalised action/support plan to address any barriers to attendance
  • We can and will contact outside agencies, for example medical care, social emotional support, family support agencies if it is felt that this support is needed to help improve attendance for the child/ren.


Good time-keeping is a vital life skill which will help children as they progress through their school life and out into the wider world.


Pupils who arrive late disrupt sessions and, if a child misses the start of the session, they can feel unsettled and embarrassed and miss important messages from their nursery teacher.



Understanding barriers to attendance


Whilst any child may occasionally have time off nursery because they are too unwell to attend, sometimes they can be reluctant to attend nursery. Any barriers preventing regular attendance are best resolved between the nursery, the parents/carers and the child. If a parent/carer thinks their child is reluctant to attend nursery, then we will work with that family to understand the root problem and provide any necessary support.

All agencies who work with children have a duty to support the Local Authority in ensuring all children are safe and looked after appropriately.

It is our responsibility as a nursery to work with the LA Education and Inclusion team, by making referrals as we feel is necessary and appropriate.

Other Policies supporting attendance.

Relationships Policy

Behaviour Policy

SEND Offer

Safeguarding Policy.




Spring Meadow Primary School & ‘School House’ Nursery expectations – Parents/carers:

  1. Parents should ensure that their children arrive at nursery on time, with the correct equipment and suitably dressed for the time of the year.
  2. Parents should support the nursery by avoiding, if possible, non-emergency medical/dental appointments for their child during term time.
  3. It is the parents’ responsibility to inform the nursery of the reason for a child’s absence on the first day of absence and in line with the school’s procedures for informing of absence.
  4. All unexplained attendances will be monitored and parents will be kept informed about any attendance concerns relating to their own child. Parents are expected to attend meetings when requested and support the nursery in responding to ongoing attendance concerns.


Spring Meadow Primary School & ‘School House’ Nursery expectations - Nursery Staff

The Nursery Staff are the key staff members in promoting regular punctual attendance they will:

  1. provide a good example by always being punctual to nursery and meeting children at the door – providing a welcoming environment;
  2. keep an accurate and up-to-date register of attendance;
  3. follow the Attendance Policy procedures
  4. maintain swift action and effective communication with the School Attendance Leader on all attendance matters concerning any nursery pupil.
  5. build a welcoming atmosphere in the nursery and provide support as necessary when children return after an absence.

Spring Meadow Primary School & ‘School House’ Nursery expectations - Inclusion Team.

The Inclusion Team takes responsibility for monitoring the attendance of children and regularly promotes the importance of attendance and punctuality. They will:

  1. ensure that their team is aware of their responsibilities with respect to promoting attendance and punctuality and adherence to the attendance policy and procedures;
  2. monitor and track the attendance of vulnerable groups;
  3. monitor the attendance of individual class groups, following up with irregular patterns of absenteeism that are not being effectively addressed;
  4. have attendance as a regular item during Inclusion meetings;
  5. ensure contact is made with parents of poor attendees – always placing support before sanction.








Spring Meadow Primary School & ‘School House’ Nursery Expectations - Attendance Officer

The Attendance Officer is responsible for regularly checking attendance data and ensuring data is accurate and up to date. The Attendance Officer will:

  1. ensure that data is input daily into the attendance management system;
  2. ensure that parents of absent children are contacted where notification of absence has not been received;
  3. respond to any parent seeking support on attendance concerns;
  4. provide regular attendance and punctuality data for relevant staff and external agencies in line with the agreed procedures and timescales;
  5. be responsible for disseminating important attendance information including informing the Attendance Leader of which children are of concern; in-line with the agreed procedures and timescales;
  6. be responsible for managing and maintaining attendance records and systems.


Spring Meadow Primary School & ‘School House’ Nursery expectations – Attendance Leader

The Senior Leader responsible for Attendance will promote good attendance and punctuality.  They will:

  1. regularly meet with their Line Manager reporting on progress and next steps planning;
  2. implement the 5 Foundations of Effective Attendance Practice framework;
  3. ensure the Foundations action plan is monitored and actioned throughout the school year;
  4. provide training and support to staff
  5. use attendance data to make links with attendance and academic performance;
  6. ensure that reference to attendance is included in all school documentation e.g. school newsletters, letters to parents, information for booklets etc.