Encouraging great attendance at school
Central to raising standards in education and ensuring all pupils can fulfil their potential is an assumption so widely understood that it is insufficiently stated – pupils need to attend school regularly to benefit from their education. Missing out on lessons leaves children vulnerable to falling behind. Children with poor attendance tend to achieve less in both primary and secondary school.
The government expects:
- Schools and local authorities to:
- Promote good attendance and reduce absence, including persistent absence;
- Ensure every pupil has access to full-time education to which they are entitled; and,
- act early to address patterns of absence.
- Parents to perform their legal duty by ensuring their children of compulsory school age who are registered at school attend regularly.
- All pupils to be punctual to their lessons.
The School Day:
- Children begin to arrive at 8.45am.
- Staff will meet & greet their pupils in reception.
- The School Day starts at 9:00am & finishes at 3:00pm.
Parents are expected to:
- It is a parent/carers responsibility to ensure their child of compulsory school age attends full-time education regularly & on time.
- If your child is unable to attend, it is your responsibility to contact the school. Please report and absences via the ParentMail app or by calling 01384 816000 by 9am of the day of absence giving an explanation as to why your child will not be in school.
- If your child continues to be absent then please contact the school daily, until your child is fit to return to school.
Our School is expected to:
- A register will be taken by the class teacher/person leading the lesson within the first 15 minutes of the first lesson of the day.
- A register will be taken again by the class teacher/person leading the lesson within the first 15 minutes after lunchtime break.
- If the class teacher is aware that a child is going to be absent from school, then they will alert the school receptionist and put a note on the school’s registering operating system as to the reason for absence.
- Any child/young person arriving before the register closes at 9.40am will be given an 'L' mark in the register.
- Any child/young person arriving after the register closes at 9.40am will be given a 'U' mark. Please note that this is an unauthorised mark.
Requesting ‘Leave of Absence’ in term time
Any request for a leave of absence in term time has to be granted by the Headteacher of the school, supporting evidence outlining the 'Exceptional Circumstances' may be required.
All requests must to be made in writing a minimum of 4 weeks prior to the leave of absence requested.
Our Absence Request Form can be obtained from the school reception or you may use the link below to view/download an electronic copy:
Routine medical appointments such as dentist, opticians, etc should be made outside of the school day and a copy of appointment letter is required if this has not been possible. All specialist medical appointments such as consultants, paediatricians, orthodontist, etc. will be authorised, as long as school is in receipt of a copy of the appointment letter. This needs to be provided to the school's Reception.
Unexplained Absence from School
When no reason has been provided for a child/young person's absence the school will initiate a 'First Day Contact' response in line with 'Keeping Children Safe in Education 2019' and 'Children at Risk of Missing Education'.
The following steps take place:
- A text via ParentMail will be sent asking for the reason for your child’s absence.
- If no response is received and the reason for absence is still unknown, a phone call will be made by school to try and establish the reason for your child’s absence.
- If no reason can be obtained for your child’s absence, then a home visit may be carried out.
Please note, we may also contact your identified emergency contact numbers on our school management system to establish the reason for your child’s absence.
Persistent Absence from School
A 'persistent absentee' is any child/young person whose attendance falls below 90% with more than 10% unauthorised absences.
Absences will be unauthorised if a parent fails to provide a reason for absence or the school does not accept the reason for absence provided.
Our school monitors attendance very closely, looking at patterns and trends of absence - this information will form part of a support plan when we work with parents to improve their child’s attendance at school.
It is in the best interest of the child, family and school if problems with attendance are identified early. School staff will support wherever possible in encouraging your child/young person to attend school regularly by creating a safe & welcoming environment to be in.
The TEAM Education Trust’s Early Help Team and our school's nominated attendance manager will be available to offer support if some of the issues you are experiencing are not related to school.
This support could include any of the following; parent meetings, partnership agency referrals (if it is appropriate), home visits, letters relating to progress, bespoke/reintegration education packages, TEAM Attendance Panel Interview, robust attendance improvement plan, regular monitoring and a referral to the Education Welfare Service for consideration of prosecution if significant improvement has failed in line with Section 7 of the 1996 Educations Act:
Section 7 of the 1996 Education Act states that parents have a duty to ensure their child (ren)'s regular attendance. The Local Authority now have powers under sections 444, 444A and 444ZA of the Education Act 1996 to bring legal action against parents in order to enforce attendance at school.
Use the link below to view/download a copy of our Attendance & Absence Policy: