Article 28 of the United Nations Charter on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) says that children and young people have the right to education no matter who they are.

The law says you must ensure your child has an education that is provided efficiently and is suited to their age and ability.

You can do this by choosing a local authority school, an independent school, or by providing education at home.

You must make sure your child attends regularly if they are registered at a local authority school; absence from school should not be without a reasonable excuse. Absences from school are categorised as either authorised or not authorised.  Authorised absences will include ill health or family issues: family holidays taken during term time will generally not be authorised unless exceptional circumstances.

Some schools have home-school link workers, who will contact families where a pupil may not be attending regularly to help resolve any problems.

If your child seems to be having problems which are affecting his or her willingness or ability to go to school, it is important to talk to the school. You can let them know about the problems and work together to help your child re-engage with school.

If your child continues to be regularly absent, school may contact social services or a referral may be made to the Children’s Reporter.

Part-time education

If a child is struggling to attend school, a part-time timetable might be put in place as part of a plan to a full return to school. This may be used for a short time and should not become permanent. Parents, school and any other people involved in supporting your child should be in agreement and participate in regular review of this approach.

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