Legal Action for Irregular School Attendance
Within the resources area below you will find additional and updated forms in relation to the expectations required of schools prior to referring cases to the Local Authority for them to initiate legal action for irregular attendance at school.
You should find below:
- a standard operating procedure flow chart
- first notice letters
- 15 day notice letter
- a revised letter ‘Final Notice response required 2.0
- a new referral form ‘Request to Initiate Legal Proceedings'
These updates are further to information previously shared at various briefings and attendance workshops.
The letter entitled ‘Final Notice response required 2.0’ is to replace the letter ‘sch final notice 1.5’ as issued previously in your attendance packs. In the absence of a Local Authority court officer, legal advice sought has advised of this required change in order to ensure all schools are meeting evidential requirements for addressing any attendance matters requested for further legal intervention. The written response by the parents as requested within this letter will also be required to be submitted as evidence in each case.
It is the expectation that prior to issuing the formal notice letters every effort has been made by the school to communicate with parents by conducting home visits, meetings and to have offered the appropriate ongoing welfare support to address any identified attendance difficulties in each case. It is also the expectation that in all cases any statutory defences preventing regular attendance are identified and that schools safeguarding duties are upheld.
Requirements for a successful referral
Once satisfied that all necessary requirements have been met, schools will need to send in a referral ‘Request to Initiate Legal Proceedings’, all evidence to be relied upon in the case, witness statements (compliant with section9 of the PACE Act and all exhibits. Only then will the request be suitable for consideration by the Local Authority (legal services).
Should any schools require further support, CPD, supervision, training or advice in relation to any school attendance matters please do contact me to discuss your requirements and current costings.
Irregular Attendance SOP flowchart 1.1
Standard Operating Procedure flowchart for Irregular School Attendance
Sch First Notice no contact 1.3
School Attendance First Notice no contact letter template
Sch First Notice 1.4
School Attendance First Notice letter template
Sch 15 day notice 1.6
Irregular Attendance 15 day notice letter template
Final Notice 2.0
Final Notice letter template
Request to Initiate Legal Proceedings
Request to Initiate Legal Proceedings Referral Form