Autumn and Spring Term 2021/22

Pupil absence in schools in England: autumn and spring terms

Data guidance

Published

Description

This document describes the data included in the ‘Pupil absence in schools in England: 2018/19’ National Statistics release’s underlying data files. This data is released under the terms of the Open Government License and is intended to meet at least 3 stars for Open Data. The methodology should be referenced alongside this data. It provides information on the data sources, their coverage and quality as well as explaining methodology used in producing the data. 

Coverage

This release provides information on the levels of overall, authorised and unauthorised absence in:

  • state-funded primary schools 
  • state-funded secondary schools
  • state-funded special schools
  • pupil referral units

It includes information on: 

  • reasons for absence 
  • persistent absentees 
  • pupil characteristics 
  • absence by term 

The information is based on pupil level absence data collected via the school census.

File formats and conventions

Rounding 

This dataset has not had suppression applied. 

Conventions 

The following convention is used throughout the underlying data. 

‘z’ Not applicable. 

Data files

All data files associated with this releases are listed below with guidance on their content. To download any of these files, please visit our data catalogue.

Absence rates by geographic level - autumn and spring terms combined

Filename
1_absence_2term_main_rates_.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2016/17 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

Absence information for both autumn and spring term combined for all enrolments in state-funded primary, secondary and special schools including information on overall absence, persistent absence and reason for absence for pupils aged 5-15. Includes school level data.

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
enrolments_pa_10_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_10_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
num_schoolsNumber of schools
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type - Total includes primary, secondary and special
sess_auth_appointmentsNumber of medical appointments sessions
sess_auth_appointments_rateMedical appointments rate
sess_auth_excludedNumber of excluded sessions
sess_auth_excluded_rateExcluded rate
sess_auth_ext_holidayNumber of extended authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_ext_holiday_rateExtended authorised holiday rate
sess_auth_holidayNumber of authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_holiday_rateAuthorised holiday rate
sess_auth_illnessNumber of illness sessions
sess_auth_illness_rateIllness rate
sess_auth_otherNumber of authorised other sessions
sess_auth_other_rateAuthorised other rate
sess_auth_religiousNumber of religious observance sessions
sess_auth_religious_rateReligious observance rate
sess_auth_studyNumber of study leave sessions
sess_auth_study_rateStudy leave rate
sess_auth_totalreasonsNumber of authorised reasons sessions
sess_auth_totalreasons_rateAuthorised reasons rate
sess_auth_travellerNumber of traveller sessions
sess_auth_traveller_rateTraveller rate
sess_authorisedNumber of authorised absence sessions
sess_authorised_percentAuthorised absence rate
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_overall_totalreasonsNumber of overall reasons sessions
sess_overall_totalreasons_rateOverall reasons rate
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
sess_unauth_holidayNumber of unauthorised holiday sessions
sess_unauth_holiday_rateUnauthorised holiday rate
sess_unauth_lateNumber of late sessions
sess_unauth_late_rateLate rate
sess_unauth_noyetNumber of no reason yet sessions
sess_unauth_noyet_rateNo reason yet rate
sess_unauth_otherNumber of unauthorised other sessions
sess_unauth_other_rateUnauthorised other rate
sess_unauth_totalreasonsNumber of unauthorised reasons sessions
sess_unauth_totalreasons_rateUnauthorised reasons rate
sess_unauthorisedNumber of unauthorised absence sessions
sess_unauthorised_percentUnauthorised absence rate
sess_x_covidNumber of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_x_covid_rateRate of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_y_exceptionalNumber of sessions recorded as exceptional circumstances
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present
  2. Total includes state-funded primary and secondary schools. Does not include special schools. Available from 2006/07 to present (data for special schools is available separately from 2016/17 onwards)

Enrolments with one or more session of absence, including by reason for absence - autumn and spring term combined

Filename
2_absence_2term_oneplussessions_.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2016/17 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

The number of enrolments with one or more session of absence, including by reason for absence. Includes school level data.

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrol_auth_appointmentsNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to medical or dental appointments
enrol_auth_excludedNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to exclusion
enrol_auth_ext_holidayNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to agreed extended family holiday
enrol_auth_holidayNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to agreed family holiday
enrol_auth_illnessNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to illness
enrol_auth_otherNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to other authorised circumstances
enrol_auth_religiousNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to religious observance
enrol_auth_studyNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to study leave
enrol_auth_travellerNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to traveller absence
enrol_authorisedNumber of enrolments with at least one authorised absence session
enrol_overallNumber of enrolments with at least one overall absence session
enrol_unauth_holidayNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to family holiday not agreed
enrol_unauth_lateNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to arriving late
enrol_unauth_noyetNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to no reason yet
enrol_unauth_otherNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to other unauthorised circumstances
enrol_unauthorisedNumber of enrolments with at least one unauthorised absence session
enrol_x_covidNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to not attending due to COVID circumstances
enrol_y_exceptionalNumber of enrolments with at least one absence session due to exceptional circumstances
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
num_schoolsNumber of schools
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present

Absence rates as a percentage of possible sessions by band - autumn and spring terms combined

Filename
3_absence_2term_onepercent_bands_.csv
Geographic levels
National
Time period
2016/17 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

The number of pupil enrolments by overall, authorised and unauthorised absence percentage point bands. Includes percentage point bands for illness absence and not attending in cricumstances relating to coronavirus (COVID-19)

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrolments_authorisedNumber of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for authorised absence
enrolments_authorised_percentPercentage of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for authorised absence
enrolments_illnessNumber of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for illness absence
enrolments_illness_percentPercentage of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for illness absence
enrolments_overallNumber of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for overall absence
enrolments_overall_percentPercentage of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for overall absence
enrolments_sess_x_covidNumber of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for non-attendance due to coronavirus (COVID-19)
enrolments_sess_x_covid_percentPercentage of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for non-attendance due to coronavirus (COVID-19)
enrolments_unauthorisedNumber of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for unauthorised absence
enrolments_unauthorised_percentPercentage of all pupil enrolments that fall into that per cent band for unauthorised absence
percent_bandsAbsence percentage band - Filter by percentage of absence
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present

Absence rates in pupil referral units (PRUs) - autumn and spring terms combined

Filename
4_absence_2term_pru.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2013/14 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

Absence rates for pupil referral units

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
enrolments_pa_10_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_10_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
num_schoolsNumber of schools
sess_auth_appointmentsNumber of medical appointments sessions
sess_auth_excludedNumber of excluded sessions
sess_auth_ext_holidayNumber of extended authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_holidayNumber of authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_illnessNumber of illness sessions
sess_auth_otherNumber of authorised other sessions
sess_auth_religiousNumber of religious observance sessions
sess_auth_studyNumber of study leave sessions
sess_auth_totalreasonsNumber of authorised reasons sessions
sess_auth_travellerNumber of traveller sessions
sess_authorisedNumber of authorised absence sessions
sess_authorised_percentAuthorised absence rate
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_overall_totalreasonsNumber of overall reasons sessions
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
sess_unauth_holidayNumber of unauthorised holiday sessions
sess_unauth_lateNumber of late sessions
sess_unauth_noyetNumber of no reason yet sessions
sess_unauth_otherNumber of unauthorised other sessions
sess_unauth_totalreasonsNumber of unauthorised reasons sessions
sess_unauthorisedNumber of unauthorised absence sessions
sess_unauthorised_percentUnauthorised absence rate
sess_x_covidNumber of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_y_exceptionalNumber of sessions recorded as exceptional circumstances

Absence rates for four year olds - autumn and spring terms combined

Filename
5_absence_2term_4year_olds_.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2016/17 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

Overall absence for all enrolments in state-funded primary, secondary and special schools for pupils aged 4

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
num_schoolsNumber of schools
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present

Absence rates by pupil characteristic - autumn and spring combined

Filename
6_absence_2term_characteristics.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2016/17 Autumn and Spring Term to 2021/22 Autumn and Spring Term
Content

Absence information for autumn and spring term combined by pupil characteristics such as age, gender and ethnicity for England. 

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
characteristicCharacteristic - Filter by characteristic
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
enrolments_pa_10_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_10_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type - Total includes primary, secondary and special
sess_auth_appointmentsNumber of medical appointments sessions
sess_auth_excludedNumber of excluded sessions
sess_auth_ext_holidayNumber of extended authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_holidayNumber of authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_illnessNumber of illness sessions
sess_auth_otherNumber of authorised other sessions
sess_auth_religiousNumber of religious observance sessions
sess_auth_studyNumber of study leave sessions
sess_auth_totalreasonsNumber of authorised reasons sessions
sess_auth_travellerNumber of traveller sessions
sess_authorisedNumber of authorised absence sessions
sess_authorised_pa_10_exactNumber of authorised absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_authorised_percentAuthorised absence rate
sess_authorised_percent_pa_10_exactAuthorised absence rate exact
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_pa_10_exactNumber of overall absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_overall_percent_pa_10_exactOverall absence rate exact
sess_overall_totalreasonsNumber of overall reasons sessions
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
sess_possible_pa_10_exactNumber of sessions possible for persistent absentees
sess_unauth_holidayNumber of unauthorised holiday sessions
sess_unauth_lateNumber of late sessions
sess_unauth_noyetNumber of no reason yet sessions
sess_unauth_otherNumber of unauthorised other sessions
sess_unauth_totalreasonsNumber of unauthorised reasons sessions
sess_unauthorisedNumber of unauthorised absence sessions
sess_unauthorised_pa_10_exactNumber of unauthorised absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_unauthorised_percentUnauthorised absence rate
sess_unauthorised_percent_pa_10_exactUnauthorised absence rate exact
sess_x_covidNumber of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_y_exceptionalNumber of sessions recorded as exceptional circumstances
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present

Absence rates by geographic level - termly data

Filename
1b_absence_2term_main_termly_.csv
Geographic levels
Local Authority; National; Regional
Time period
2018/19 Autumn Term to 2021/22 Spring Term
Content

Termly absence information for autumn and spring term for all enrolments in state-funded primary, secondary and special schools including information on overall absence, persistent absence and reason for absence for pupils aged 5-15.

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
enrolments_pa_10_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_10_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_50_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 50% or more sessions missed
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type - Total includes primary, secondary and special
sess_auth_appointmentsNumber of medical appointments sessions
sess_auth_appointments_rateMedical appointments rate
sess_auth_excludedNumber of excluded sessions
sess_auth_excluded_rateExcluded rate
sess_auth_ext_holidayNumber of extended authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_ext_holiday_rateExtended authorised holiday rate
sess_auth_holidayNumber of authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_holiday_rateAuthorised holiday rate
sess_auth_illnessNumber of illness sessions
sess_auth_illness_rateIllness rate
sess_auth_otherNumber of authorised other sessions
sess_auth_other_rateAuthorised other rate
sess_auth_religiousNumber of religious observance sessions
sess_auth_religious_rateReligious observance rate
sess_auth_studyNumber of study leave sessions
sess_auth_study_rateStudy leave rate
sess_auth_totalreasonsNumber of authorised reasons sessions
sess_auth_totalreasons_rateAuthorised reasons rate
sess_auth_travellerNumber of traveller sessions
sess_auth_traveller_rateTraveller rate
sess_authorisedNumber of authorised absence sessions
sess_authorised_percentAuthorised absence rate
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_overall_totalreasonsNumber of overall reasons sessions
sess_overall_totalreasons_rateOverall reasons rate
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
sess_unauth_holidayNumber of unauthorised holiday sessions
sess_unauth_holiday_rateUnauthorised holiday rate
sess_unauth_lateNumber of late sessions
sess_unauth_late_rateLate rate
sess_unauth_noyetNumber of no reason yet sessions
sess_unauth_noyet_rateNo reason yet rate
sess_unauth_otherNumber of unauthorised other sessions
sess_unauth_other_rateUnauthorised other rate
sess_unauth_totalreasonsNumber of unauthorised reasons sessions
sess_unauth_totalreasons_rateUnauthorised reasons rate
sess_unauthorisedNumber of unauthorised absence sessions
sess_unauthorised_percentUnauthorised absence rate
sess_x_covidNumber of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_x_covid_rateRate of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_y_exceptionalNumber of sessions recorded as exceptional circumstances
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present

Absence rates by pupil characteristic - termly data

Filename
6b_absence_2term_characteristics_termly_.csv
Geographic levels
National
Time period
2020/21 Autumn Term to 2021/22 Spring Term
Content

Termly absence information by pupil characteristics including age, gender, year group, free school meals (FSM), special educational needs (SEN) and ethnicity for England. 

Variable names and descriptions

Variable names and descriptions for this file are provided below:

Variable nameVariable description
characteristicCharacteristic - Filter by characteristic
enrolmentsNumber of pupil enrolments
enrolments_pa_10_exactNumber of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
enrolments_pa_10_exact_percentPercentage of persistent absentees - 10% or more sessions missed
school_typeSchool type - Filter by school type - Total includes primary, secondary and special
sess_auth_appointmentsNumber of medical appointments sessions
sess_auth_excludedNumber of excluded sessions
sess_auth_ext_holidayNumber of extended authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_holidayNumber of authorised holiday sessions
sess_auth_illnessNumber of illness sessions
sess_auth_otherNumber of authorised other sessions
sess_auth_religiousNumber of religious observance sessions
sess_auth_studyNumber of study leave sessions
sess_auth_totalreasonsNumber of authorised reasons sessions
sess_auth_travellerNumber of traveller sessions
sess_authorisedNumber of authorised absence sessions
sess_authorised_pa_10_exactNumber of authorised absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_authorised_percentAuthorised absence rate
sess_authorised_percent_pa_10_exactAuthorised absence rate exact
sess_overallNumber of overall absence sessions
sess_overall_pa_10_exactNumber of overall absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_overall_percentOverall absence rate
sess_overall_percent_pa_10_exactOverall absence rate exact
sess_overall_totalreasonsNumber of overall reasons sessions
sess_possibleNumber of sessions possible
sess_possible_pa_10_exactNumber of sessions possible for persistent absentees
sess_unauth_holidayNumber of unauthorised holiday sessions
sess_unauth_lateNumber of late sessions
sess_unauth_noyetNumber of no reason yet sessions
sess_unauth_otherNumber of unauthorised other sessions
sess_unauth_totalreasonsNumber of unauthorised reasons sessions
sess_unauthorisedNumber of unauthorised absence sessions
sess_unauthorised_pa_10_exactNumber of unauthorised absence sessions for persistent absentees
sess_unauthorised_percentUnauthorised absence rate
sess_unauthorised_percent_pa_10_exactUnauthorised absence rate exact
sess_x_covidNumber of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_x_covid_rateRate of sessions recorded as not attending due to COVID circumstances
sess_y_exceptionalNumber of sessions recorded as exceptional circumstances
Footnotes
  1. Total includes state-funded primary, secondary and special schools. Data for special schools is available from 2016/17 to present