Absences and Illness

All students under 17 years of age are legally required to attend school each day. This includes days devoted to such activities as sporting carnivals or excursions.

Absence Explanations

Explanations for absences must provide a reasonable excuse, and can be provided via return SMS, phone call, email, written note, or in person. Examples of a ‘reasonable excuse’ may include:

  • illness, including recovery from major illness, injury or medical condition
  • medical or dental treatment
  • bereavement
  • religious or cultural observation
  • sanctioned extended absence in relation to children of travelling families
  • attendance at court or other legal hearings or meetings associated with hearings
  • participation in sanctioned debates, sports, musical or theatrical productions not directly arranged by the school, or
  • participation in interstate, national, or international academic or sporting events or equivalent.

Sleeping in or traffic delays, particularly if these become regular occurrences, are not generally considered reasonable excuses.


If a student cannot go to school, or will be late, our preference is for a parent/carer to advise the school in advance via a phone call on 6142 1174 or email to LynehamHS.Absences@ed.act.edu.au

On any day that a student has not arrived by approximately 9.30am, a parent/carer will be sent an SMS message advising the absence and seek an explanation. They can reply to the SMS with their explanation.

School starts with home group at 8.53am with Home Group. If a student is late, they must sign-in at the front office. If they do not have an explanation for the late arrival from a parent/carer, an SMS message will be sent home on Friday to advise of the lateness to school and seek an explanation. Again, explanations can be provided by return SMS.

Leaving During the Day

If a student needs to leave during the day (eg for an appointment), they will need a note to get out of class. The options for this are:

  • A parent/carer can give a note at home asking them to be excused at a particular time, and the student shows it to the teacher.
  • A parent/carer can ask the front office (email, in person or over the phone) to send a ‘pink note’ via runner to the classroom.

All students then need to come to the front office to sign out.

Unexplained Absence

Home group teachers will routinely contact parents if a student is absent for 3 days without explanation, or if no note has been received on a student's return to school.

If a student has 7 days of unexplained absences (not necessarily consecutive days), a formal letter will be sent home instructing parents to contact the school. If a student has 14 days of unexplained absences, a second formal letter is sent home and the Education Directorate is notified to follow up with the family.

For more information, refer to the Education Directorate's Attendance page.

Illness During the Day

Students who feel unwell or who are injured must report to Sick Bay, located in the Front Office. If this happens in class time, a note from the teacher is required. Front Office staff have First Aid qualifications and will contact parents or seek further medical attention should that be necessary.

In line with the school's Personal Electronic Devices Policy, we request that student do not call or text their parents from class if they are unwell.

Staff cannot dispense personally prescribed medications without the written authority of parents. Paracetamol will only be dispensed to students with parental permission.

Note: It is very important that changes of address, contact phone numbers and guardians are notified to the school so that we can contact parents and carers promptly in case of illness or accident at school.