Children missing education
Children Missing Education are children of compulsory school age who are not registered pupils at a school and are not receiving suitable education elsewhere, such as at home, an alternative provision, or at a hospital.
If a child is not in school, they are at significant risk of underachieving, becoming socially isolated, and becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training) later in life. Children who are not accessing a suitable education are also considered to be at risk of neglect and other forms of harm and abuse.
Children may not be attending or may leave school for a number of reasons, but if they are still of compulsory school age, then parents, schools and local authorities have a responsibility to ensure the continuity of their education.
If you are a parent of a child who is not currently in school or receiving suitable education elsewhere, then you must contact School Admissions immediately and complete a school application form.
The Attendance Management Service works with schools and families in relation to children who have been identified as being at risk of missing education, which will involve an assessment of all the information made available by schools, together with that held by the council and professionals (where information sharing permits), and shared by parents. We do this to help us assess any possible risks and to identify the best way to support children in returning to a suitable education provision as quickly as possible.
School attendance orders
Should a parent fail to register their child at a school and not make suitable alternative education arrangements, the council may issue a School Attendance Order requiring the parent to register their child at a named school. Not complying with a School Attendance Order is a criminal offence, which means you could be taken to court and the outcome could be a fine and a criminal record. Please contact the Attendance Management Team if you need help registering your child at a school.
Report a child missing from school
If you know of a child near you who doesn’t appear to be in school, you can use our online form to let us know.