Week 2 2022

Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

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  1. The time period for week 1 January 2022 dates in table 1A has been updated.

  2. Title of Chart/Table in the Attendance in state-funded schools section has been changed to 'Attendance in all state funded schools September 2020 - January 2022'.

A summary of attendance in education settings for the 2021/22 academic year, excluding out of term dates as data is not collected. The data covers England only. 

Primary data sources on infection, incidence, and COVID-19 cases overall are not shown in this publication but are available on the coronavirus in the UK dashboardnational COVID-19 surveillance reports and coronavirus infection survey pilot statistics.

This publication provides national and local authority level summary estimates from the Department for Education's daily education settings survey and local authority early years survey. Data files are available in the ‘Explore data and files’ section on this page for further details and analysis.

Pupil absence in schools in England: autumn term statistics were published on 27 May 2021 presenting absence data collected via the school census covering the pandemic. That release is derived from pupil level data from which further analysis, such as the amount of time missed, can be derived.

These statistics have been produced quickly in response to developing world events. In May 2020, the Office for Statistics Regulation, on behalf of the UK Statistics Authority, reviewed them against several key aspects of the Code of Practice for Statistics and regarded them as consistent with the Code’s pillars of Trustworthiness, Quality and Value.


Headline facts and figures - 2022

In this summary, national data refers to Thursday 6 January. Local authority data is included and the reference date is Thursday 16 December 2021.

LAs started breaking up for the Christmas holidays from Friday 17 December. National data for 17 December onward are available in table 1a for download. Data for these dates are not comparable to dates when schools are in normal term time. 

Phased return

From Tuesday 4th January, schools began reopening to students after the Christmas holidays. Secondary schools were asked to complete asymptomatic testing for students with Lateral Flow Devices (LFDs). While testing was being completed from 4th January, secondary schools were classed as being on a phased return. A large number of secondary schools misinterpreted the EdSet form and selected their open status as "closed due to coronavirus reasons" during this period. Normally this open status is only selected if a school has had to close due to an outbreak of COVID-19. Due to this misinterpretation, any secondary school that selected "closed due to coronavirus reasons" from 4 January has not been included. 

Open Rates

  • Over 99.9% all state-funded schools were open on 6 Jan 2022, up from 99.7% on 16 Dec 2021.

Pupil absence

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) related pupil absence in all state-funded schools was 3.9% on 6 Jan, up from 3.7% on 16 Dec.
  • Among pupils absent for COVID-19 reasons, the main reasons for absence on 6 Jan were: pupils with a confirmed case of COVID-19 (2.0%), and pupils with a suspected case of COVID-19 (1.3%).

Pupil on site attendance 

  • Attendance in all state-funded schools was 88.6% on 6 Jan, up from 85.9% on 16 Dec.  

Workforce absence

  • We estimate that 8.6% of teachers and school leaders were absent from open schools were absent on 6 Jan, up from 8.0% (42,000) on 16 Dec.
  • We estimate that 8.9% of teaching assistants and other staff were absent from open schools were absent on 6 Jan, up from 7.3% (52,000) on 16 Dec.

Regional absence

  • COVID-19 related absence in state funded schools for both pupils and the staff workforce, increased across all English regions between 9 Dec and 16 Dec.
  • The highest rate of COVID-19 related pupil absence was 5.1% in London on 16 Dec, an increase from 2.4% on 9 Dec. North East and Yorkshire and The Humber had the lowest rate of COVID 19 related absence of 2.6% on 16 Dec, up from 2.0% for North East and 2.4% for Yorkshire and The Humber on 9 Dec.
  • London had the highest COVID-19 related workforce absences on 16 Dec, with 5.3% of teachers and schools leaders and 3.8% teaching assistants or other staff absent for COVID-19 related reasons. This compares with 2.4% of teachers and schools leaders and 2.1% teaching assistants or other staff absent for COVID-19 related reasons on 9 Dec.

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