Week 48 2021

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


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 - 2021

Open Rates

  • 99.9% all state-funded schools were open on 25 Nov 2021, same on 11 Nov 2021.

Pupil absence

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) related pupil absence in all state-funded schools was 2.6% on 25 Nov, up from 1.6% on 11 Nov.
  • Among pupils absent for COVID-19 reasons, the main reasons for absence on 25 Nov were: pupils with a confirmed case of COVID-19 (1.3%), and pupils with a suspected case of COVID-19 (1.0%).

Pupil on site attendance 

  • Attendance in all state-funded schools was 89.3% on 25 Nov, down from 91.5% on 11 Nov.  

Workforce absence

  • We estimate that 2.0% of teachers and school leaders in open state-funded schools were absent due to COVID-19 reasons on 25 Nov, up from 1.4% on 11 Nov.
  • We estimate that 1.9% of teaching assistants and other staff in open state-funded schools were absent due to COVID-19 reasons on 25 Nov, up from 1.4% on 11 Nov.

Early years settings

  • The early years local authority survey moved to a monthly basis from 16 September 2021 with no publication due this week.

The Department for Education has been collecting LA-level data on early years childcare provision since April 2020 on a weekly, and until summer 2021 on a fortnightly, basis. Data collection was paused over summer, resuming on 16 September 2021 for the start of the 2021/22 academic year. This data has been crucial to the Department during the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure it holds timely data on the use of childcare, and we are incredibly grateful to LAs and providers for taking the time to send it to us during this time. In line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics we recently sought views on making some changes to the early years data collection. Having reviewed the needs of a range of users, we have decided to continue collecting and publishing data on early years childcare provision but on a monthly basis, for the rest of the year. We will review and seek views on future plans towards the end of the autumn term.


Help and support