It will not come as a surprise to anyone to realise there is a clear link between poor attendance and lower academic achievement. It is essential that your child attends school in order to learn, socialise with their peers and make good progress towards the next stage of their education and lifelong learning.
What to do if you are having trouble getting your child to school:
In the first instance contact your child’s teacher, Phase Leader or our Inclusion Manager (Mrs Warnes) to let them know there is a problem and they will advise you.
Late to school?
Being late for school reduces learning time.
If your child is 5 minutes late every day they will miss three days of learning each year.
If your child is 15 minutes late every day they will miss 2 weeks of learning each year.
Make their time in school count!
- Attending school every day = 100% attendance.
- Attending 4 ½ days a week = 90% attendance = 4 weeks missed per year
- Attending 4 days a week = 80% attendance = more than half a term missed per year or 2 full years missed over the course of their school career.
- Attending 3 ½ days each week = 70% attendance = more than a quarter of the school year missed.
An average attendance of 80% or less across a child’s school career adds up to missing a whole 2 years from school
We want your children to enjoy their time in school and at the end of their school career we want to know they are leaving with a solid foundation for their chosen path in life.
Your bit? To do this they do need to be in school as much as possible and for that they need your support and guidance as parents.
Our bit? Once they are in school we ensure they are safe, happy and nurtured. But most of all that they are learning!
Their bit? That they are in school every day and on time ready to learn.
Leave of Absence during Term Time
Amendments to the 2006 Regulations in Education -Changes came into force on 4th November 2013.
Head teachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. No holidays will be authorised.
If you apply for a leave of absence for holiday which is not granted by your child’s school but still choose to take them away from school in term time then you could be subject to a fixed penalty fee of £60 per child per parent.
If your child misses a period of time out of school they may:
- struggle to keep up with school work. In a busy school day it is difficult for schools to find the extra time to help a child catch up.
- miss out on the social side of school life – especially at primary school. Poor attendance can affect children’s ability to make and keep friendships; a vital part of growing up.
The only exceptions are for :
- Medical visits (where these cannot be arranged out of school time)
- Educational visits/school activities
- Exceptional circumstances (e.g. a funeral)
- Religious observance
Some important figures:
Our attendance target: 96.5%
Academy Attendance Improvement Team look at 92%
Norfolk Persistent Absence Level : 90% – We have to take some action when attendance falls below this level. Attendance Level that involves Local Authority Attendance Officer: 90%
School attendance figures are calculated from the registers taken each day. This is at 8.50am and 1.15pm. This means each day is counted as 2 attendance sessions. If your child arrives late, after the registering period has closed, this will alter their attendance percentage.
Having a good attendance at school is really important. We are committed to helping all pupils achieve good attendance, and have the following in place to reward good attendance:
Each half term (so about every 6 weeks) all pupils that have achieved 100% attendance for that half term will receive a certificate.
End of Term Attendance Information
At the end of each term certificates are awarded for Gold, Silver and Bronze attendance. Those who have achieved 100% attendance are entered into a prize draw.
Local Authority Attendance Officer
Our Local Authority Attendance Officer is Doritt Andrews. Dorit will visit the academy once a term to discuss attendance. Dorrit is looking at pupils with an attendance level of 90% or less. This can be either for the school year so far, or in more serious cases during a 6 week period; usually a half term.
An attendance meeting will be called at school. An action plan will be agreed and then reviewed over a set period. If attendance has not improved after this then the parents/carers of the pupil will be referred to the courts. This may result in a fine or in more serious cases a prison sentence.
Every effort will be made by all involved with the school to prevent this happening – we would much rather work with families to improve attendance – but we have, and will, refer families where we have been unable to improve attendance.
What Happens During An Attendance Panel Meeting?
All attendance panels held at school will follow the same format.
- Parents/carers will be sent a letter inviting them to a meeting. You will get at least 7 – 10 days notice of the meeting. We strongly recommend that you attend this meeting – the meeting goes ahead regardless of whether you attend or not.
- Attendance meetings will usually have the Principal or Deputy Principal and the Inclusion Manager present. The County Attendance Improvement Officer may also attend.
- You will be given the opportunity to discuss why your child’s attendance is low.
- We will see if there any support we can offer to help to improve attendance.
- A list of agreed targets will be set.
- A review date will be set. Another attendance panel meeting will be held to see if the targets have been met and attendance improved.
- Depending on the outcome of the review meeting another review meeting may be called.
- A signed copy of the meeting and actions plans will be issued to all in attendance – if parents/carers do not attend a copy will be sent home.