In recent years the city has seen improvements in school attendance rates, achieved through hard work by schools, parents, communities and partner agencies. An Attendance Strategy is already in place and the implementation is monitored by the work of the Behaviour and Attendance Group (BAG) which now sits under the auspices of the Portsmouth Education Partnership (PEP).
However, the fact is that Portsmouth’s pupils do not attend school as regularly as their peers nationally and there is therefore still considerably more work to do. In 2016/17 there were 3,032 pupils (12.8% compared to a national average of 10.8%) who were persistently absent (below 90%) and 305 (1.3%) who were chronic absentees (i.e. are absent more than 50% of the possible sessions).
Ensuring good attendance at school is a key priority, against which the work of all agencies will be assessed, and all agencies undertake to support parents to ensure that children’s learning is given top priority so that their life chances can be maximised. Portsmouth offers a range of services to schools to promote regular school attendance – for more details see the traded services website.