Persistent absence

All schools (excluding special schools)

We use the school census to calculate and monitor persistent absence.

Schools (excluding special schools) will no longer need to send the persistent absence return to Medway.

Reports developed by SIMs for Medway Council will still be updated yearly by Medway (reflecting the new term dates) and uploaded for school’s internal use.

Special schools

The school census collects absence data yearly rather than termly, so we cannot monitor special schools in the same way. 

We request that special schools continue to submit their persistent absence return. This will only be after each term has ended for example, Autumn: Term 1 to 2, Spring: Term 1 to 4 and Summer: Term 1 to 6.

We’ll send a yearly reminder about when the import is needed as term dates change.

Importing reports

To complete your report you will need to download the Report Definition file (RptDef) for each of the six terms.

For guidance on how to import the new report into your school’s own SIMS database, download our persistent absence report guidance.

If you need any help please contact maninfo@medway.gov.uk or your Attendance and Advisory Practitioner.

If you do not use SIMS

If your school does not use SIMS, you can download a non-SIMS template.

There may be a standard attendance report in your system that could help with the necessary information.

Why we need this data

This return contains individual pupil data, so should be sent securely using a password protected 7zip file or Egress.

You should select 7z as the archive format as normal zip files can no longer make it through our email security filters. See guidance below for further information.

The report produced will contain attendance details for all pupils in your school. This is so EHTT (troubled families program) and Looked After Children (LAC) teams can identify specific individuals.

EHTT (troubled families) team need positive evidence that pupils that had persistent absence are now going to school regularly to enable funding. A partial return also limits the support that schools or any individuals close to getting funding can get. It also limits any in depth analysis that can be done.

If you do not wish to share details on these additional pupils you can remove them, as completing this report is not a statutory requirement. None of the data you supply will be passed outside of our Absence, LAC or EHTT teams.

For information on how schools and local authorities’ requirements, download the Department for Education guidance on school attendance.

Many schools have reported that this system is easy to use, so you can upload and run the report quickly.

For more information phone 01634 337 088, 01634 337 086 or 01634 338 180.

This team works with school information returns and performance data. They are unable to assist with any attendance issues or enquires.

Contact the attendance advisory service for schools and academies team on 01634 337 130.

More information regarding attendance can be found on the school attendance website.