Here’s SAM’s top do’s and don’ts for managing absence in a quick five minute update.


  • Apply procedures fairly and consistently
  • Communicate the school’s absence policy and procedure at induction and regularly throughout the course of employment
  • Set a good example to staff
  • Allow reasonable time off to attend medical appointments
  • Show compassion
  • Closely monitor absence to identify trends/patterns – SAM’s reporting suite provides comparisons by year, term, department and line manager.
  • Tackle absence problems and act as soon as possible – SAM’s task list will help, it prompts you when actions are due
  • Hold return to work interviews following every period of absence – There’s a new section in SAM that highlights who is returning to work and when
  • Set absence monitoring rounds with timescales for improvement – Again SAM can help you manage monitoring rounds.
  • Record details of all absences related discussions with employees and where appropriate confirm outcomes in writing to the individual
  • Challenge current policies and procedures, working practices, working conditions as a means to improve absenteeism


  • Jump to conclusions
  • Make rash decisions
  • Ignore sickness absence or persistent lateness
  • Put off contacting an employee unless there is reason to do so
  • Treat individual’s differently
  • Try to trap the employee or make accusations
  • Discriminate on the grounds of a protected characteristic (eg. race, sex, disability, sexual orientation, age, religion or belief, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity)
  • Take formal action without seeking HR advice

If you would like to know more about how you can improve staff absence management in your school or Multi-Academy Trust then get in touch on 01924 907319 or take a look at our software animation.


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