School wants to ensure that parents and carers are fully aware of the importance of good attendance and punctuality, and that parents/carers are aware of their responsibilities.
We are committed to promoting and modelling good attendance and behaviour – which is essential for pupils to achieve their potential. Poor attendance is directly correlated to a pupil’s level of success and development in their education.
As a parent, you have a legal requirement to ensure that your child is on time and attends school on a regular basis.
We understand that there are times when children will need to be absent from school for a number of reasons. This could include:
- Sickness or ill health
- Religious or cultural observances
- Family emergencies
We ask that all parents follow our Attendance Policy when reporting absences. Any parent who has not reported their child as absent will be contacted by the school via telephone, text message or email. Failure to provide reasoning for your child’s absence may result in your child receiving an unauthorised absence and could lead to penalty notices being imposed on you.
Absences during term time will only be authorised in exceptional circumstances and the length of any authorised absences will be determined by the Headteacher. Requests for leave of absence during term time for the purpose of a family holiday will not be accepted.
Authorisations will not be granted for absence in the following instances:
- Day trips and holidays in term time
- Leaving school for unnecessary reasons during the school day
- Not attending school for an unnecessary reason such as shopping or birthdays
- Truancy before or during the school day
- Absences which have not been properly explained or have failed to follow the absence procedure
We must also state the importance of punctuality with regards to the beginning of the school day. You will be aware that the school day starts at 8:45 AM and all pupils are expected to be on school premises at this time. Registers are marked and close at 9:00AM.
Should your child arrive after the register closes, they will receive a mark to show that they are on-site, though this will be recorded as a late mark. Continuous lateness will, therefore, result in several late marks, despite your child being on-site for the rest of the school day. Teachers are trained and encouraged to identify and report any potentially at-risk pupils, should they notice any of the stated unauthorised absences as common occurrences, including lateness.
It is now possible for parents to be issued penalty notices for unauthorised absences. Penalty notices begin with an initial fine of £60, rising to £120 if paid after 21 days but within 28 days. Following failure of these payments, the local attendance officer may decide to prosecute a parent. If so, parents can be fined up to £2,500 or imprisoned for failing to ensure that their child attends school regularly.
I urge you to read our Attendance Policy, which can be accessed via our school website here.