Regular school attendance is important for children’s academic progress and well-being. We aim to maximise attendance rates and secure high levels of punctuality in order to ensure that all pupils are able to take full advantage of the learning experiences available to them.
It is parent’s responsibility to inform schools of the reason for a child’s absence as soon as possible. Parents are expected to contact the School Office on the first day of absence by 9am giving as much information as is available. A conversation will take place where needed if it considered the child may be able to attend.
If a parent does not contact the school office to explain a child’s absence, the following procedure will take place:
· Phone call home to the parent asking for reasons for absence
· If no answer, message will be left asking for immediate contact to be made with school
· If no message by 9.30am – phone call home
· Unexplained absence will be referred to the Headteacher (or a member of the SLT)
· Headteacher will action a home visit
· Home visit will be conducted to speak to the parent and ensure that the child is safe
· If contact is not made at the home, Headteacher will action safeguarding procedures
When children are off school due to illness, the priority for the school remains as safeguarding. Home visits will be actioned if the school feel it is appropriate or to check in with parents if attendance is an issue.
The school policy is to encourage punctuality but to also actively discourage lateness as it can disrupt lessons. If a child is late and misses registration, a late mark will be recorded. If a child arrives after 9.10am when the register is closed, then the lateness will be marked as unauthorised. Any pupils arriving after this time MUST report to the School Office.
Only the school, within the context of the law, can approve absence, not parents. (Section 199, Education Act 1993).
Illness, Medical and Dental Appointments
· Pupils should only be absent from school through illness if absolutely necessary
· If the school is satisfied that a pupil of compulsory school age is prevented from attending school by reason of illness, then the absence will be classed as authorised.
· Leave for hospital appointments will be authorised on production of an appointment letter
· GP or dental appointments may be authorised on production of an appointment card if an essential appointment
· Routine (non-urgent) dental and GP appointments are to be made outside of the school day
A family holiday in term time is not an exceptional circumstance and likely to be recorded as an unauthorised absence. Some exceptional circumstances may be authorised, but this is at the discretion of the Headteacher.
Exceptional circumstances could include a request for leave following;
· the return from ‘active deployment’ by a parent serving in the Armed Forces
· where leave is recommended as part as part of a parent’s or child’s rehabilitation from medical or emotional problems. Evidence must be provided
· When a family needs to spend time together to support each other during or after a crisis
· Where inflexibility of the parents’ leave or working arrangement is part of the organisational or company policy. This must be evidenced by the production of documentation from the organisation/company. (Parents are asked to consider timings of these requests e.g. not immediately before or after school holidays, during assessment periods, transition times and significant times where learning disruption will have a greater impact)
Requests for leave of absence should be made on a Leave of Absence Form which can be obtained from the school office. The Headteacher has been delegated the power to authorise such leave during term time and it is essential that requests for such leave are made PRIOR to booking any holiday.
For more information, see our Attendance Policy.