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Secondary Education: Absenteeism

Volume 486: debated on Thursday 15 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what progress has been made against the target to ensure that no local authority has more than five per cent. of its secondary school pupils as persistent absentees by 2010-11; and if he will make a statement. (247412)

In 2007/08 (combined autumn and spring terms), eight local authorities (LAs) had persistent absence in maintained secondary schools of over 10 per cent., down from 14 in the same period of 2006/07, and 128 had persistent absence of over 5 per cent., down from 137 in 2006/07. 2008/09 (combined autumn and spring terms) data will be available in October 2009.

The National Strategies are providing intensive support and challenge to 42 LAs with high persistent absence, ensuring that all of the targeted schools in their authority are implementing agreed actions to reduce their absence rates. The National Strategies are also working with a further 59 LAs to improve their use of data to support and challenge schools with high persistent absence.