Runnymede St Edward's Catholic Primary

Part of the Edmund Rice family of schools ‘Inspire, Challenge and Support through Faith’




At Runnymede, we believe that for children to achieve their full potential they need to attend regularly and punctually. Children should be at school, on time, every day the school is open, unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable. Parents/carers should contact the school on the first day of a pupil’s absence. They should state the reason for their child’s absence and also the date on which they are expected to return to school. Notification of absence should be by telephone call, voicemail or personal contact.


Longer periods of illness, due to chicken pox, flu, etc are expected. However, some children have two or three days away from school throughout the school year due to illness. This quickly adds up to pupils missing a significant number of days. This is why we are asking parents/carers to consider if their child really needs to miss the time from school. If possible, bring your child to school and see if they could manage being in school.


We will identify children at risk of becoming a persistent absentee if their attendance falls below 95%.

A child will be identified as being a persistent absentee if their attendance falls below 90%.


The Governing Board have revoked the authority for the Headteacher to authorise any requests for leave of absence for any breaks or holidays during term time.


The Department for Education have amended their ‘National framework for Penalty Notices’ and this has a direct implication for holidays taken during term time from September 2024.


  • From September 2024, if you take your child out of school for a holiday for 10 sessions (5 school days) or more, you will receive a penalty notice. (Previously 10 school days)
  • 10 sessions of unauthorised absence marks over a rolling period of 10 school weeks, may also incur a penalty notice.
  • Penalty notice charges will increase to £160 per parent per child, reduced to £80 if paid within 28 days (Previously £60)
  • If you take your child out of school for a second time within a 3 school year period the penalty notice charge will be a flat rate of £160 per parent per child.
  • A 3rd holiday within 3 school years will lead to legal interventions, which may include prosecution.
  • If your child is consistently late and receives a ‘U’ mark, 10 times within a 10 school week period, You could also be eligible for a fixed penalty notice.


There maybe times when our school will require medical evidence for children who are absent from school. 


Please contact the main office and ask to speak to Mrs O'Donnell, our Pastoral Support Worker, who can help and guide families with any concerns.


We operate a 'First Response' system and will always call you if your child is absent from school and we have not been informed.

Children who are consistently absent or if any patterns are occurring, parents/carers will be asked to meet with the attendance lead Mrs O'Donnell in the first instance.

Should the child's attendance not improve a further meeting will be arranged for you to meet Mrs O'Donnell, Mr. J. Long (Deputy Head) and the Education Welfare Officer, to address any health concerns.


Please click here to access our Attendance Policy.



The school day begins at 8.45am for all children. 


The school gates are closed by 9.00am, and any child who arrives after this time will need to enter school at the main entrance and report to Mrs O'Donnell giving the reason for lateness. A record of this will be kept.


At Runnymede we have been working hard to improve attendance and time keeping at the school. There are a few key things that we wish to develop with all our families:


  • It is essential that parents/carers are on time bringing children to school and when collecting them at the end of the day. Class teachers will be asking for reasons for any lateness and persistent lateness will be further investigated by school or the Education Welfare Service.
  • Please continue to ring with reasons for absences. The school number is 0151 281 2300.
  • There has been a change of policy with regard to punctuality. The Local Authority is urging schools to issue penalty notices to families that are persistently late for school.
  • Before this action, we would write to you informing you of your punctuality record then, if there is no improvement, a parent/carers’ meeting will be arranged. Only if there is no improvement following this meeting would any type of fine or court procedure be used.


This is an area of school life that we can only improve with your support and co-operation.