Shakespeare Infant School

We Care


Every day counts ... Your child’s attendance matters


Should my child stay home from school?

Parents often ask us if their child should be in school. If your child has no temperature but has a cough, cold, headache, earache then as with adults medical advice is to give them paracetemol (calpol, etc) and send them to school. We will always contact you if your child’s condition worsens or if we believe it is contagious such as chicken pox, vomiting, etc.

Preventing or minimizing illnesses – it can be done!


One way to lessen the number of days your child needs to stay home is to prevent the illness in the first place.

Childhood immunisations can prevent many diseases, such as measles, mumps, and chicken pox. Many illnesses can also be prevented through proper hygiene.

Some hygiene reminders for your children:

not to share food

not to share drinks

not to share clothing

to throw away used tissues

to wash hands frequently using soap or hand sanitizer.


There are two attendance sessions every day and missing school for a whole day counts as two absences so ...


Medical/dental/optician appointments

Whenever possible make all medical appointments at the end of the school day or outside school hours. 

If an appointment is made in school time your child should come to school first and/or return after their appointment. Please be aware that the absence or illness of a pupil should not affect the education of their siblings. If a pupil has an appointment (particularly at the beginning or end of the school day) arrangements should be made to ensure that the other sibling is either dropped off or collected from school on time.


Lack of sleep

If your child has been ill in the night and has had broken sleep, please consider sending them into school in the afternoon with a note. Your child may feel better and they will have the chance to join their friends and find out about homework and learning missed.


Absent, but able to learn

If your child is absent due to a long term or contagious illness but is able to work at times. Please contact your school to request work. Many schools now have virtual learning platforms (VLE) so your child can communicate with school through the Internet and access their classwork. Our school policy on illness is based on direct advice and guidance from the Department for Education (DfE). The DfE rule of thumb is “would the ailment keep parents/carers and teachers away from work?”.

Please visit the website if you would like further details:


Long term or chronic medical conditions

Please talk to us if your child has a chronic or long term illness as there are a number of ways your child can maintain some education – such as hospital schools or teaching services, home teaching and education centres. We will always aim to support your child in being able to continue some form of education; and we will work closely with you and your child to

ensure that we maintain the right balance so your child can keep up whilst checking the type and amount of school work that your child does is appropriate for them and their medical condition.


So what impact can this have?

Liam is in Year 1 and his attendance rate at school is always around 90%. Liam and his family think this is pretty good! If Liam continues to attend for only 90% of the time, then over five years he will miss the equivalent of about one-half of a school year.


90% attendance for Liam = 20 days absence (four weeks of school missed).

Two days sore throat – September.

Five days cold and cough – December.

Two days dentist – six month check up.

One day christmas shopping.

One day upset stomach – March.

Two days high fever/virus – June.

Five days unauthorised holiday.

One day birthday treat.

One day – two doctors appointments.


Did you know that of pupils who miss between 10% and 20% of school:


- only 35% manage to go on and achieve five A* to C GCSEs including English and mathematics, compared to73% of pupils with over 95% attendance - only 66% of pupils gained a Level 4+ in English or mathematics at Key Stage 2, compared to 87% of pupils with over 95% attendance. DfE, 2011


Finally – remember to telephone or email the school in the morning, for any absence to confirm the reason and date of return to school. Supervise your child to catch up on work missed.

Please note regulations for schools give the headteacher the right to consider whether to accept the parent/carers position with regard to medical absence. – and may decide to unauthorise these absences.


Catch it, bin it, kill it

Type of illness NHS recommended period to be kept away from school

Diarrhoea or vomiting - 48 hours since last episode.

Flu - Until recovered.

Whooping cough - Five days from commencement of antibiotics or 21 days from onset if no antibiotic treatment.

Conjunctivitis - None.

Head lice - None if the hair has been treated.

Mumps - Five days from onset of swelling (vaccination).

Thread worms - None.

Tonsillitis - None.

Chicken pox - Five days from onset of rash or until spots are crusted over – common March to May.

Cold sores - None.

German measles - Five days from the onset of rash can be vaccinated against.

Hand, foot and mouth - None.

Impetigo - Until lesions are crusted and healed or 48 hours after starting antibiotics.

Measles - Four days from the onset of rash.

Slapped cheek - None – most cases are caught late winter spring.

Warts and verrucae - None.


For more advice visit please:


Complete the leave of absence request form for exceptional circumstances only.  Holidays in term time will not be authorised and may lead to a penalty notice of £60 per parent.