Education in New South Wales is compulsory for all children between the ages of six years and below the minimum school leaving age.
Education for your child is important and regular attendance at school is essential for your child to achieve their educational best and increase their career and life options. NSW public schools work in partnership with parents to encourage and support regular attendance of children and young people. When your child attends school every day, learning becomes easier and your child will build and maintain friendships with other children.
Visit the Department of Education's (DoE) website foe more info: Supporting a child in attending school
This document has all relevant info for families: Compulsory School Attendance
The importance of arriving on time Arriving at school and class on time:
- Ensures that students do not miss out on important learning activities scheduled early in the day
- Helps students learn the importance of punctuality and routine
- Give students time to greet their friends before class
- Reduces classroom disruption
Lateness is recorded as a partial absence and must be explained by parents
What if my child has to be away from school?
On occasion, your child may need to be absent from school. Justified reasons for student absences may include:
- being sick, or having an infectious disease
- having an unavoidable medical appointment
- being required to attend a recognised religious holiday
- exceptional or urgent family circumstance (e.g. attending a funeral)
Families are encouraged to travel during school holidays. If travel during school term is necessary, discuss this with your child’s school principal. An Application for Extended Leave may need to be completed. Absences relating to travel will be marked as leave on the roll and therefore contribute to your child’s total absences for the year.
My child won’t go to school
What should I do? You should contact the year advisor as soon as possible to discuss the issue and ask for help. Strategies to help improve attendance may include a referral to the school’s learning and support team or linking your child with appropriate support networks. The school may seek further support from the Home School Liaison Program to develop an Attendance Improvement Plan.
What might happen if my child continues to have unacceptable absences?
It is important to understand that the Department of Education and Communities may be required to take further action where children of compulsory school age have recurring numbers of unexplained or unjustified absences from school. Some of the following actions may be undertaken: Compulsory Schooling Conferences
- Application to the Children’s Court – Compulsory Schooling Order
- Prosecution in the Local Court
What age can my child leave school?
Since 2010, all NSW students must complete Year 10. After Year 10 and until the age of 17, students must be:
- in school, or registered for home schooling OR
- in approved education or training OR
- in full-time, paid employment (average 25 hours/week) OR
- in a combination of these three.
More information: School Leaving Age