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Truancy

Volume 472: debated on Tuesday 26 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what the most common reasons for absence were of those students identified by dedicated local pupil tracking officers as missing from education for a period longer than 10 days in the latest period for which figures are available; (187726)

(2) how many students were identified by dedicated local pupil tracking officers as missing from education for a period of more than 10 days in the latest period for which figures are available.

The information requested by my hon. Friend is not available. The statutory duty for local authorities to identify children missing from education commenced in February 2007 and local authorities have been implementing systems over the past year that should enable collection of local level data. However, national information is not available regarding periods of, and reasons for, absence from education as reliable information cannot be produced using current methods of collection. My Department will consider how to collect appropriate information in the future.