Student Services

Holidays in term time application form

Student Attendance

If your child is absent from school you must notify the school by 8.30am with the reason using any of the following methods:

  • Absence Line - 01234 290200 press 1
  • Email -
  • Send text via In touch service to 07860 095350

No other numbers or emails should be used to report absences.

If we have not heard from you by 9am on the day of the absence, we are obliged to investigate the absence.

School begins at 8.25 am every day. Students should be on site by 8.25 am at the latest to ensure they are ready for this. It is expected that students arrive promptly to each and every lesson. The school takes very seriously poor punctuality and lesson truancy.

We aim to improve attendance and work even more closely with parents and students to ensure good attendance, which leads to success (and is an important life skill in the world of work)

**Please note that there will be sanctions for lateness, and for unexplained absence. We need parents to support us by ensuring there is no need for a sanction.

Students whose Attendance is a cause for concern may be referred to the Education Welfare Service


An absence is recorded in the register as either authorised or unauthorised at the schools discretion.

The following circumstances are classed as authorised absence:

  • Illness
  • Bereavement of a close member of the family
  • Other circumstances where permission has been granted in advance by the Headteacher.
  • Religious observance

The following circumstances are classed as unauthorised absence:

  • Haircut                                           No uniform
  • Overslept                                       Missed bus
  • Looking after house                      Looking after family
  • Shopping                                         Sham illness            
  • Late (after registers close)                
  • Family holiday not agreed or days in excess of agreement

Unauthorised absences are recorded on the student’s profile. The school is obliged to report the number of unauthorised absences annually.

10 or more unauthorised sessions of absence within a twelve week period may result in a referral to the Education Welfare Service and the issue of a Fixed Penalty Notice. 

Please note that employers/other institutions often request individual attendance records as part of a reference.

Medical Appointments
Please may I also remind you that medical appointments should be taken out of school time and only emergency appointments taken during the school day. Any appointments that have to be taken during the school day will require a note, appointment card or text to be shown to verify the appointment. Please advise the school of the appointment before it is taken by calling the absence line - 01234 290200 (selecting option 1), or email the appointment details.

Holidays In Term Time

Holidays in term time will not be authorised unless there are exceptional circumstances. If the holiday is still taken, we may also apply for a fixed penalty notice for each student, in addition to the absence being marked as unauthorised. In any case, all holidays should be applied for on the leave of absence request form available on the Margin on this page or in paper form from main reception at the school, giving at least 2 weeks notice to the Head Teacher, Mrs Foster.


The school day begins at 8.30am with registration in Tutor Time. If the student is late to school before the end of Tutor Time they should go straight to their Tutor where they will be registered.

If Tutor Time has finished by the time they arrive they must sign in at Student Reception. Any lateness after 9.00am (when the schools registers close) will be recorded as an unauthorised absence unless a valid reason is given by the parent/carer.

Students arriving late will have a text/Email sent home to parents unless a valid reason is given and supported by parents/carers.

Tips to Improve Attendance

  • Always attend registration. If you have a medical appointment at 10am come into school first to get your morning mark.
  • Always attend P5. Try and make any appointments after 2.30 pm.




Mark Rutherford School
Wentworth Drive, Bedford, Bedfordshire Mk41 8PX
Telephone 01234 290200 : Fax 01234 290236 : Email: