School Fixed Penalty Notices

A School Attendance Fixed Penalty Notice can be issued for the following reasons:

  • Where there is a minimum of 10 unauthorised sessions or five school days in the current year (these do not need to be consecutive).
  • Persistent lateness i.e. arriving after the close of the registration period.
  • Where a parent or parents refuse to engage with a school to improve their child’s school attendance levels.
  • Persistent truancy in a public place.
  • Where a holiday in term time has been requested but has not been authorised (see guidance on holidays in term time).

If a school requests a fixed penalty notice to be issued, we will review the information and only issue a fixed penalty notice if it is appropriate to do so.

Do I need to pay?

A School Attendance FPN is £60 if paid within 28 days of receipt of the notice, and rises to £120 if paid after 28 days but within 42 days of receipt. If the FPN is not paid in full by the end of 42 days, we may either:

  • prosecute parents/carers in the usual way using section 444(1) or (1A) of the Education Act 1996.
  • withdraw the FPN in limited circumstances.

There is no statutory right of appeal, but where a parent contests the issuing of a fixed penalty notice, they can submit any complaints to the Education Welfare Serve and/or opt to face proceedings in the magistrates’ court under section 444 of the Education Act 1996.

You can pay a fixed penalty notice online.

Unauthorised absences

An unauthorised absence is recorded when the reason given for an absence has not been deemed unacceptable by the Headteacher.

It is only the Headteacher of your child's school who can authorise a pupil's absence.

For more information about authorised and unauthorised absences, visit our School Attendance page.

Improving attendance

You can improve your child's attendance and avoid a fixed penalty notice by following these steps:

  • Ensure that your child attends school every day and arrives on time.
  • If your child is ill, make sure you contact the school on the first day and explain the circumstances. You may be asked to provide medical evidence.
  • Make sure the school has your correct contact details.
  • Avoid arranging holidays during term time.
Last Modified: 22/11/2023
For more information contact:

Inclusion Service


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