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Terrigal High School

Terrigal High School

A quality comprehensive education with a history of academic success.

Telephone02 4384 4677


Attendance policy

This is a basic guide to the attendance procedures at Terrigal High School.

School Attendance

Parent/Caregiver responsibilities

In line with our aim of ensuring that all students gain the maximum benefit possible whilst at school and that optimum attendance is achieved we ask for your support.  It is the responsibility of parents/caregivers to:

  • Ensure that children of compulsory school age are enrolled in school and attend everyday.
  • Explain the absences of their children from school promptly and within seven days to the school.
  • Provide an explanation for absences by means such as a telephone call, written note, text message or email to the school within 7 days of the first day of absence.
  • Liaise with the school beforehand if a student absence is likely to be more than a few days (eg. through sickness, special family leave).
  • Apply to the Principal in writing for leave ahead of time.
  • Work in partnership with the school to plan and implement strategies to support regular attendance.
  • Arrange for family holidays to occur during vacation time.

Roll call

  • Students must be punctual to roll call, 9am. 
  • Roll call is when students names are marked off as being present at school.   
  • Roll call is an essential part of the school day as important messages and updates are shared with students.   


  • Notes giving a justifiable reason for absences must be handed in within 7 days, this includes partial absences. We are unable to change the records after this time.
  • As with all notes, they must be written and signed by a parent or legal guardian/caregiver.
  • Notes should clearly state student's full name and year as well as the valid reason.
  • All absences need to be explained, whole day and partial absences are recorded on reports.
  • When your child is absent for two days or more, please contact the school to let us know the reason for the absences.

Late arrivers

  • Students arriving late must sign in at the front office and present a note giving a valid reason for late arrival before going to class. Traffic, missed the bus and slept in are not valid reasons for being late.
  • A partial absence will be recorded on their attendance record, which in turn will appear on their school report.
  • Lateness to school is defined by the bell for roll call at 9am. 
  • Repeated lateness:

-       Students who are late more than 3 times in one week without a justified reason, will be put on a Detention and placed on a Late Monitoring Card for 2 weeks. 

-       Students will be required to have their card signed by their roll call teacher with the time of arrival and they will need to report to the Head Teacher Administration at recess. 

-       If late whilst on a Monitoring Card the student will receive a subsequent Afternoon Detention and additional day on the card. 

-       Students who undertake 2 or more Monitoring Cards in a term without a justified reason will require a parent interview with the Deputy Principal and if the lateness still continues it will be referred to the Home School Liaison Officer. 


  • Rolls are marked at the start of every lesson.
  • Students arriving late to class should have an absence slip or note explaining the reason.
  • Students are monitored closely to ensure that they meet attendance requirements and demonstrate sustained and diligent effort.
  • Parent contact will be made by class teacher/Head Teacher for students causing concern.
  • Information/concerns regarding welfare issues will be sent to Andrew Yates (Head Teacher Welfare) for appropriate intervention.

Pass outs

  • Students who need to leave school prior to the end of the normal school day require a pass out.
  • Requests for leave (pass outs) are to be presented to a Deputy Principal before school for validation. It is not possible for students to have parents phone during the day to arrange for a pass, except in an emergency.
  • Requests will only be granted where valid reasons are given. Parents will be contacted regarding unsatisfactory reasons when possible. 
  • Notes need to contain student's name, year, date and the reason for seeking the pass. Driving tests, birthday lunches, going to work, late due to traffic and such are not deemed to be acceptable.
  • Students unable to participate in sport are to attend provide a note but are to go along to their venue.
  • All medical and other appointments should be made outside school hours where possible.

Senior students

  • There are no “flexible” timetables and senior students are required to be at school all day.  With the exception of Tuesdays where they can leave at 12:10pm if they don’t have any scheduled classes and Periods 4 & 5.   
  • Seniors need to attend roll call every day.
  • Some Seniors will have a timetabled Period 0 which starts at 8am.
  • There is a variety of learning spaces available for Seniors to use during their Study Periods.  These include the Senior Study Centre in the Library or the Learning Hubs in each of the Faculty areas.  Mrs Morris is also available to Seniors 4 days/week to support them with study skills, time management and assessment tasks.   


  • Students intending to go on extended leave during school time are required to seek the Principal's approval (over 10 days) and complete an Application for a Certificate of Exemption form available from the front office.
  • Applications need to be consistent with the Department of Education procedures.


  • Sport is compulsory.  Mandatory hours must be met by students.
  • Students unable to participate in sport due to illness or injury must supply a note or medical certificate to verify this and attend the normal venue. Parents will be contacted to confirm the validity of notes where doubts of authenticity are concerned.

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