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Monday 4th March marks the start of Greswold's 'Punctuality Push'

Dear Parents and Carers,


Punctuality is the first step towards success


Being punctual and on time is one of life’s most important qualities, whether you’re a child, adult, teacher or parent.  It shows you are reliable, dependable, can be trusted and demonstrates respect to other people and for their time. 


Over the past year, it has become noticeable that incidents of lateness, both in the morning and at the end of the school day, have increased. As a senior leadership team, we feel now is the right time to highlight this growing issue and promote the lifelong benefits of being punctual.


In terms of Greswold, since January 8th 2024 up to 21st February 2024, there have been nearly 800 cases of pupil lateness and that is just in the mornings!  Below is a breakdown of the reasons why pupils have been late.  Medical appointments are not included.


Number of late pupils





No reason given







Total 777


The amount of minutes of learning time lost in total due to lateness during this period is nearly 12,000!


Admittedly, modern day living can provide many challenges and, as a school community, we are aware of this. There are occasions when things can get stressful, things go wrong, or unforeseen circumstances can cause a family to be a few minutes late.  However, our role as educators, in partnership with parents, is to also prepare pupils for the next step in their school careers and beyond. This means young people need to value the importance of being on time. Greswold Year 6 pupils are allowed the responsibility of travelling to and from school for this purpose.


There is an enormous amount of published material on the benefits of being punctual, especially for school, and also relating to the implications of being late.



Being on time (supported by published material):


  • Helps young people to be organised;
  • Helps to build children’s confidence;
  • Reduces stress and anxiety;
  • Maintains and improves academic achievement;
  • Helps young people to maintain their routine and focus;
  • Enables children and adults to start the day settled, ready and relaxed;
  • Is a sign of respect (one of Greswold’s school values);
  • Allows others (including school staff) to use their time wisely and efficiently.



Impact on pupils who are late


Unfortunately, but understandably, there are a number of negative consequences for pupils who arrive late to school:

  • Arriving late can cause some pupils to feel very anxious, as they go into the classroom by themselves once everyone else is settled, calm and working.
  • Key learning time will be missed. Class teachers or teaching assistants may have planned to work with a child in an intervention group during registration time, but who is late, meaning there is a knock on effect with respect to time being wasted.
  • Lunch choice options have to be rushed.  In class, the children will have more time to consider what they want while the register is being taken.
  • Pupils may miss the all-important start of the first lesson.  Without question, class teachers will then repeat their delivery to the late pupil which inevitably interrupts the flow of the lesson and the teacher’s aims and ambitions for other individuals. 
  • Below is a chart highlighting how much learning time might be missed in extreme cases:


Minutes late everyday

Total learning time lost each year

5 minutes everyday

3.4 days

10 minutes everyday

6.9 days

15 minutes everyday

10.3 days

20 minutes everyday

13.8 days

30 minutes everyday

20.7 days


Helpful tips and guidance to improve punctuality


  • Be aware that on rainy days, there will be more traffic on the roads delaying journey times.  Consider leaving the house 10-15 minutes earlier on these days.
  • When temperatures drop below 0 degrees, remember that vehicles are probably iced up, especially windscreens.  Again, leave a few minutes earlier in the morning in order to de-ice windscreens properly. 
  • If children are oversleeping or getting up late, try putting them to bed an hour earlier each night for a week. Reduce screen time before bedtime by up to an hour.
  • In terms of the recommended hours of sleep for young children, 3-5 year olds should be getting 10-13 hours each night and 6-12 year olds should be getting 9-12 hours each night (as recommended by Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital)
  • Uniforms, lunches, homework and bags could be organised the previous evening to save time in the morning.
  • Establish morning routines to help children know what to do and in which order.  This enables them to become more independent too. Visual prompts can help.
  • Provide a motivation for leaving the house early in the mornings, e.g. scoot or cycle, walking with friends and family, etc.
  • The Walking Bus provides an early morning service where children in Y1-6 can walk to school from Wharf Lane at 8am each day and return back to Wharf Lane by 3:50pm each day too.  Applications through the main school office please.


Mr Hornsey will be holding a coffee morning and a separate coffee afternoon for any parents who would like to attend to chat about issues relating to punctuality before or after school.  These will take place on the afternoon of Thursday 7th March at 2:15pm and Wednesday 13th March at 9:00am.  Any parent is welcome to attend these informal gatherings, however if you do wish to attend, please inform the school office beforehand so Mr Hornsey can get enough biscuits for everyone!!!!!!!


There is also an opportunity for parents to share their own tips and successes for maintaining punctuality, simply by clicking on the link below and completing the very simple questionnaire:


Reach out via the school office if you would like us to signpost you to further information or external services to improve punctuality.


Yours faithfully,


Mr Hornsey

Deputy Headteacher