Children missing education

Children missing education are children of compulsory school age who are neither on a school roll nor receiving suitable education at home or in alternative provision.  

By law, we have to know where all children are and where they're being educated (Education Act 2006). We're also required to identify those who aren't receiving a suitable education (Education Act 1996 section 436A).

Children and young people missing education are amongst the most vulnerable in our area, so it's vital that practitioners in all services work together to identify and re-engage these children and young people back into appropriate education as quickly as possible.

We have access  to data about pupils who aren't on a school roll and those at high risk of going missing from education or school.  

Children from the following vulnerable groups are more likely to become missing from education:

  • Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) children
  • asylum seeker, refugee, migrant worker children and children for whom English is an additional language (EAL)
  • pupils waiting for a school placement through admissions, Fair Access Protocol, or the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) processes
  • children who should be receiving education at home or through alternative provision 
  • young people who've committed offences and those at risk of becoming involved in crime
  • children identified with specific child protection issues, children in care and those in private fostering arrangements
  • children who have poor attendance or who are excluded, have long term medical issues, teenage mothers or those living in women’s refuges
  • children at risk of sexual exploitation, including those who've been trafficked to, or within the UK
  • missing children and runaways
  • families of the armed forces

Policies and guidance

Contact us

Write to: Education Welfare Service, PO Box 634, Barnsley, S70 9GG