Northern Ireland schools absence levels ‘disturbing’

The BBC is reporting that the Northern Ireland Audit office has said it is disturbed at the high level of pupils who miss weeks of schooling…

The situation has improved a little in the 10 years since the auditor last investigated, but he said there were still challenges to be faced.

Out of 300,000 school children in NI, 20,000 are missing at least six weeks of lessons each year.

The level of unauthorised absences is now proportionately twice as high as in England.

Alarm bells should ring where a pupil misses around six weeks of schooling, but the auditor is concerned that schools are not being encouraged to report all cases.

Of the 20,000 pupils who are persistently absent, less than a fifth were referred to the authorities…

Children in socially deprived areas and in traveller families are most likely to be affected…

More at: Northern Ireland schools absence levels ‘disturbing’

Any insights from Northern Ireland as to why this seems, apparently, to be a much bigger problem than in England? Please share in the comments or via Twitter…

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