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Tracking children (and their families) who have gone missing from education

Responsibilities of a school when a child is absent

You should always assess the child’s safeguarding risk at their address using thresholds and pathways guidance.

A child may be at risk of:

  • forced marriage
  • child sexual exploitation
  • domestic abuse
  • radicalisation
  • honour-based violence

If the judgement is the child is at risk of harm, contact the police or social care immediately.

If a pupil is absent, all schools have a responsibility to contact the parent or carer on the first day of absence and continue to make every effort to locate the pupil. 

Please follow your attendance procedures.

These must include:

  • phone calls to all contacts if there is no reply from your main contact
  • letters/emails to all contacts if there is no reply from your main contact
  • home visits to all known addresses

Once you have completed these checks (or within 10 days, whichever is earlier) report the child as missing from education if you have been unable to make contact with the family.

Reporting a child missing from education

If the child attends a West Northamptonshire school, please complete the form below:

This form is for Northamptonshire schools only. If you are from another local authority, please email us at [email protected].

After you submit a completed form

We will refer the case to one of our CME Tracking Officers who will complete further investigations and feedback to schools.

Our CME Tracking Officer will let you know (usually within 10 working days) if the child can be removed from your school roll.

Last updated 20 May 2024