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Absent trends

Your supplement on the performance league tables makes the same mistake as most other commentators (and the Department for Education) in analysing the "truancy" element (TES, November 25). The figures are not a measure of "children absconding from schools". Children who leave after registration count as present. The tables include only absences for whole sessions. They are far more a measure of the behaviour of schools (in deciding which absences to authorise) than a measure of action by children or parents. Great care should be exercised in drawing conclusions.

BEN WHITNEY.

47 Manor Farm Crescent.

Stafford.

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