Children missing education are defined as children of compulsory school age who are not on a school roll, and who are not receiving a suitable education elsewhere - for example, at home, privately, or in alternative provision (Education and Inspection Act 2006)

What are the risks of children missing education?

Children missing education are amongst the most vulnerable in our communities. It is vital that Doncaster Council is able to identify these children with the aim to re-engage them back in to appropriate education provision as quickly as possible. All children in Doncaster should achieve the five core outcomes under the Children’s Act (2004): Being Healthy; Staying Safe; Enjoying and Achieving; Making a Positive Contribution; Achieving Economic Well-Being’. Children not engaged in education provision can be exposed to greater risks including being at risk of physical harm or neglect, sexual exploitation, anti-social behaviour and/or criminal activity.

Why do children go missing from education?

Some children never enter the education system or do not transfer during normal transition between infant and junior school or junior/primary school to secondary school education. Some children leave Private or Independent Schools with no other education provision in place. A family may move to a different Local Authority and not immediately secure a place in a school. Some families have to seek refuge due to Domestic Abuse and due to the location are not able to access their school.

There are many reasons why children go missing from education and Doncaster Council has implemented robust procedures to ensure these vulnerable children are quickly identified and meets its statutory duties relating to the provision of education and safeguarding the welfare of children missing education.

(Section 14 (1), S7, S437 (1), S19 (1), S19 (4a) of the 1996 Education Act, S175 of 2002 Education Act, Circular 11/99 Social Inclusion: the Local Education Authority role in pupil support, Children’s Act 2004;)

What happens when a child is believed to be missing education?

Links are made with all relevant Stakeholders in order to raise awareness of Children Missing from Education and the procedures to notify the Local Authority.

How do I report a child missing education?

If you are aware of a child who you believe to be missing education and wish to make a report, you can email us anonymously at 


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Last updated: 20 July 2023 10:05:25

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