Attendance crisis: School leaders warn of rising parental disputes

Increasingly strained relationships with families are affecting school attendance, with school leaders concerned about the number of parental disputes they are seeing.
Image: Adobe Stock

Survey findings published by the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) at its annual conference in Liverpool last week revealed some disturbing reasons for student absence.

One-third (32%) of the 8,411 teachers and school leaders responding to the research said that they have seen students missing school because of a dispute with their parents or carers. This figure rises to 48% among headteacher respondents to the survey.

The research asked what reasons parents/carers gave for student absence other than illness and found that term-time holidays is most common (87% rising to 95% among headteachers), ahead of family events (76% rising to 88%).

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