Attendance


Introduction

We expect all children on roll to attend every day, when the school is in session, as long as they are fit and healthy enough to do so. We do all we can to encourage the children to attend, and to put in place appropriate procedures. We believe that the most important factor in promoting good attendance is development of positive attitudes towards school. Statistics show a direct link between under-achievement and poor attendance. As a school we strive to support families and pupils to encourage and promote excellent attendance.

Attendance and attendance patterns are systematically monitored and followed up in accordance with our Safeguarding Policy. However, permitting absence from school without a good reason is an offence by the parent/guardian.

Under the Education (pupil Registration) Regulations 1995, the Governing Body are responsible for making sure the school keeps an attendance register that records which pupils are absent at the start of both the morning and the afternoon sessions of the school day. The register will be coded to indicate authorised or unauthorised absences.

Each year, Attendance Targets are set for the whole school and across the Borough. The current target for lqra Primary School is 96.0%.

Definitions:

Authorised Absence

An absence is classified as authorised when a child has been away from school for a legitimate reason and the school has received notification from a parent or guardian. For example, if a child has been unwell, the parent writes a note or telephones the school to explain the absence and it is considered the reason is an appropriate and valid reason for the child to be kept off school. On occasion unavoidable causes can be considered as valid; however, parents/guardians must notify school of circumstances

Unauthorised Absence

When the absence is without good reason and without the permission of parent/guardian and/or school. Therefore a child maybe away without good reason supported by the parent/guardian but NOT the school.

The school have the right to code an absence they feel is due to unreasonable grounds as UNAUTHORISED.

Examples include: Absences which are unexplained, parents keeping children off when it is avoidable, truancy before/during the school day, late arrival after the register closes, leave for holiday

Punctuality

Registration is at 8.45am. Children are expected to arrive at school between 8.30 and 8.40am. The school gate closes at 8.45am. Any pupil arriving after 8.45am will be considered as late and must register in the office. A number of lates will result in a meeting between staff and the parent.

Child being absent: Parental responsibility

A parent/guardian MUST ring or contact school office staff on the first morning of absence with a reason and when the child is expected to return. If the illness is prolonged, it is important to keep school informed. Under special circumstances, school can liaise with home to ensure the child receives some school work to keep up to date.

NB It is advisable to arrange Doctor/Dentist appointments out of school hours, however, if it is unavoidable, please let the office staff know so they can ensure the absence is authorised and correctly coded.

School’s Responsibility

When a child is absent unexpectedly, the Class Teacher will record the absence as in the register as unauthorised. The Office staff will endeavour to contact the parent/guardian through  the “First Response” procedure, whereby an officer from the attendance team will call home to find out the whereabouts/safety of the child.

Leave of Absence

There is no entitlement to time off in term time. Leave of absence during term time is no longer allowed, however, under extenuating circumstances it can be permitted ONLY under very exceptional circumstances at the discretion of the Head teacher. Advice may be sought from the Attendance Service at Slough borough Council if deemed necessary.

Parent’s/Guardians MUST complete a “Leave of Absence” form at least one month in advance, requesting time off and fully explaining the circumstances with PLANNED dates of the journey. The Head teacher will return his/her decision in writing usually within a few days.

Absence/s taken which are not authorised could be liable for:

i) A fixed penalty notice issued by the Local Authority – Recently revised by Government and Local Authority September 2013. Amendments to the 2007 Penalty Notice Regulations have reduced the timescale for paying a penalty notice. Fines must now be paid as £60 per parent per child within 21 days or £120 per parent/per child within 28 days. The Local Authority have revised the threshold when penalty notices can be issued, whereby  a  fine  will  now  be  issued  if  a  child  has  accumulated  5  days  of unauthorised absence in a 12 week period. For unauthorised holiday leave, no warning is required.

ii) A child losing their school place- if this happens parents/guardians will be advised to register their child with Admissions at Slough Borough Council based on the Central Admissions Procedures.

(Failure to pay a fixed penalty notice will lead to legal action)

Rewards

Weekly- Award cup for the best attending class in Key stage 1and 2 based on weekly figures. Classes achieving 100% attendance i.e. all pupils attending in a class for a whole week receive an additional reward.

Termly- Certificates are awarded for 100% and improved attendance to celebrate and encourage attendance

Yearly- 100% attendance /improved attendance certificates are given out with prizes for the 100% attenders at the End of Year assembly. Improved attendance is recognized to encourage positive change.

Yearly Reports- will show the child’s attendance. 99% and above is excellent, 95% and above is Good, 90%-94% satisfactory, less than 90% poor, and 85% and less is very poor

We also encourage open dialogue with parents to support families who require assistance towards ensuring their children attend school.