Next Review Date
Ms Jas Kalra
ATTENDANCE POLICY – updated to include new Dfe School Attendance guidance November 2016
This policy fits in with our school aims and ethos. It should be read in conjunction with our Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy.
Tudor Primary School is committed to providing a full, broad, balanced education for all our Pupils. We will do all we can to ensure that all pupils attend school and that any problems which impede this are identified and acted upon as soon as possible.
Absence and lateness not only damages the education progress of that specific pupil, but can also impact others in the class. Pupils in the class may be neglected when teachers help the latecomers and absentees catch up with their work.
Our message to parents is to make every effort to work together to provide the best opportunities for your child by ensuring they attend school (and take no unnecessary time out) and to arrive punctually. A child who arrives at school at 8:40am is usually ready to begin the first lesson with the class at 8:50am.
We also encourage all parents to attend Soft Start (pre -school day reading) at 8:40am Monday - Thursday. This helps children to be punctual, settled and ready to learn when school starts at 8.50.
We expect that all pupils will:
- Will attend school regularly
- Arrive on time and be appropriately prepared for the school day
- Tell a member of staff about any problems which are making it hard for them to concentrate or understand the lesson.
We expect that all parents/carers will:
- Encourage their children to attend school every day and on time.
- Ensure that they contact the school as soon as possible when their child is unable to attend school.
- Ensure that their children arrive in school fully prepared for the school day and check that they have completed their homework.
- Provide the school with up to date home, work and emergency contact numbers.
- Provide information to support any requests for absence
- Provide evidence if asked to support absences e.g. appointment cards.
- Arrange family holidays to take place during school holidays, unless in exceptional circumstances.
- Inform the school in confidence about any problems which might affect their child’s attendance or behaviour.
Acceptable reasons for absence
- Medical, when appointments are not possible outside of school hours.
Unacceptable reasons for absence
- Shopping trips
- Day trips
- Booking holidays because it is cheaper in term time
- Extended holidays
Holidays in term time
Family Holidays must be taken during school holidays, Families may be tempted by cheaper offers of holidays in term time, or they may wish to spend time away in the country where they have family ties or cultural roots. However, this cannot be authorised.
There is no legal entitlement to time off for holidays during the academic year. This kind of absence is disruptive to your child’s learning at any age.
If you believe that you have special circumstances, you must follow school procedures and seek permission from the school in advance. You will be asked to complete a holiday request form and provide information.
All holidays are unauthorised and your child could lose their place at school.
Parents and carers can expect that the school will:
- Provide good quality education
- Record their children’s attendance regularly, accurately and efficiently
- Make every reasonable effort to contact the parent when their child fails to attend school without good reason.
- Deal discreetly and properly with any problems notified to the school by the parent.
- Make all effort to encourage good attendance and behaviour
- Instigate proper enquires before removing the child from the school roll.
Promoting good attendance.
Tudor School works in liaison with Ealing LA Attendance Officers to ensure good practice. We work in compliance with Safeguarding guidelines and best practice in regard to children missing education, exclusions and attendance. We work in partnership with relevant agencies such as School Health, the Local Authority, hospitals etc. to support parents in maintaining good attendance.
The Admission and Attendance Registers:
The law requires all schools including independent schools to have an admission register and, with the exception of schools where all pupils are boarders, an attendance register. All pupils (regardless of their age) must be placed on both registers. The proprietor of a school who fails to comply with these regulations is guilty of an offence and can be fined.
Contents of Admission Register
The admission register must contain the personal details of every pupil in the school, along with the date of admission or re-admission to the school, information regarding parents and carers and details of the school last attended.
All schools must notify the local authority within five days of adding a pupil’s name to the admission register and must provide the local authority with all the information held within the admission register about the pupil. This duty does not apply to pupils who are added to the admission register at the start of the school’s youngest year – for example pupils who are registered at a secondary school at the start of Year 7 - unless the local authority also requests for such information to be provided.
Pupils Moving to a New Address and/or School
Where the parent of a pupil notifies the school that the pupil will live at another address, schools must record in the admission register: (a) the full name of the parent with whom the pupil will live, (b) the new address, and (c) the date from when it is expected the pupil will live at this address.
Where a parent notifies the school that the pupil is registered at another school or will be attending a different school, schools must record in the admission register: (a) the name of the other school, and (b) the date of when the pupil first attended, or is due to start attending, that school.
We will encourage good attendance by:
- Accurately completing attendance registers at the beginning of each session within 10 minutes of the start of the session.
- Follow-up absence on the first day
- Undertaking attendance checks at appropriate times
- Recording attendance on pupil reports
- Collecting data on attendance for the whole school and by year group and making this available to governors and parents.
- Use our Attendance Traffic Light System to communicate good attendance and highlight concerns
- Awarding good attendance with certificates for class with the best weekly attendance in KS1 and KS2.
- Award individual pupil with certificates termly for attendance of 100%
- Termly Raffle for pupils who have had a weekly attendance of 96% or above.
- Individual certificates and small gift awarded to pupils with 100% attendance for full academic year.
Responding to non-attendance
When a pupil fails to attend without a satisfactory explanation, we will:
- Contact the parent on the first day of absence by telephone.
- A letter will be sent to the parent/carer or a home visit may be made if there is no response and the unauthorised absence has exceeded 3 school days, without any contact.
- We may make a curtesy call 3 days after an authorised absence to see how your child is doing and when we can expect them back in school.
- We will make reasonable enquiries
The return to school and the reintegration of a pupil who returns to school after a lengthy absence may require special planning. The HEADTEACHER or SENCO will be responsible for deciding upon the programme for return and for the management of the programme. In collaboration with the parent, programmes will be tailored to individual needs and may involve phased, part-time re-entry with support in lessons, as appropriate.
CHILDREN MISSING EDUCATION: -
Local authorities have a duty to establish, as far as it is possible to identity of children of compulsory school age who are missing education in their area. All schools must inform the local authority of any pupil who fails to attend school regularly, or has been absent without the school’s permission for a continuous period of 10 school days or more, at such intervals as are agreed between the school, the local authority (or by the Secretary of State)
The law requires schools to have an admission register and an attendance register. All pupils must be placed on both registers
All schools must inform their local authority of any pupil who is going to be deleted from the admission register where they:
• have been taken out of school by their parents and are being educated outside the
school system e.g. home education;
• have ceased to attend school and no longer live within reasonable distance of the
school at which they are registered;
• have been certified by the school medical officer as unlikely to be in a fit state of
health to attend school before ceasing to be of compulsory school age, and
neither he/she nor his/her parent has indicated the intention to continue to attend
the school after ceasing to be of compulsory school age;
• are in custody for a period of more than four months due to a final court order and
the proprietor does not reasonably believe they will be returning to the school at
the end of that period; or,
• have been permanently excluded.
The local authority must be notified when a school is to delete a pupil from its register
under the above circumstances. This should be done as soon as the grounds for deletion
are met, but no later than deleting the pupil’s name from the register.
It is essential that schools comply with this duty, so that local authorities can, as part of their duty identify children of compulsory school age who are missing education, follow up with any child who might be in danger of not receiving an education and who might be at risk of abuse or neglect.
In order for this policy to be successful, every member of staff must make attendance a high priority and convey to the pupils the importance of the education being provided.
- Ensure that the school has in place a whole school attendance policy.
- Receive termly reports from the head teacher/ attendance officer in respect of attendance data and trends in the head teachers report.
- Monitor the effectiveness of the whole school policy.
- Oversees the whole policy.
- Has particular regard to the equalities aspect of the policies as they pertain to gender and ethnicity and to those pupils looked after in care.
- Report to Governors on attendance issues on a termly basis.
- Ensure liaisons with the link LA Attendance Officer.
- To complete registers accurately and on time
- Follow up immediately any unexplained non-attendance by liaising with the attendance officer or Serco.
- Inform the head teacher/attendance officer of concerns.
This policy will be reviewed and subject to change after 3 years.
Information for Parents
As a school we aim to
Maintain an attendance rate of a minimum of 96%
Maintain parents’ and pupils’ awareness of the importance of regular attendance Maintain good time keeping
Good attendance is important because:
Statistics show a direct link between poor attendance and under-achievement Regular attenders make better progress, both socially and academically, find school routines, school work and friendships easier to cope with, find learning more satisfying and settle into High school more easily. A regular attender attends at least 96% of the time
As a parent you can help us by:
- Ensuring your child attends school regularly. Absence should only happen when your child is significantly ill, there should be a symptom, feeling unwell is not enough. Remember we may ask for medical verification where illness-absence is frequent or prolonged
- Telephoning on the morning of any absence to give us the reason and tell us when the child is likely to return to school
- Arranging all non-emergency medical appointments out of school hours or during school holidays
- Sending us a note confirming the reason for your child’s absence when s/he returns to school
- Keeping the school updated by telephone/email or letter if your child has an extended period of absence
- Tell us if there is a change in your circumstances, if you are leaving the area or changing schools Making sure we always have your current contact numbers; this includes all telephone numbers and emergency or other contact details.
- Follow up unexplained absences by phone calls and letters as necessary
- Remind parents of the importance of regular attendance and punctuality in our letters, the school brochure, on line, open evenings, the Home-School Agreement and pupil annual reports
- Acknowledge and reward good attendance and punctuality
- Publish your child’s attendance rate on her/his annual school report
- Let you know if we have concerns regarding your child’s attendance and punctuality
Children with 90% attendance or less, whatever the reason for the absence, are classified as persistent absentees. If we have concerns, we will discuss this with you and may also make a referral to the Local Authority School Attendance Officer who visits the school regularly to review and support attendance and punctuality issues
Publish our attendance rate in the school profile and the Governing Body’s Annual Report to parents
Please remember that absence for whatever reason disadvantages a child by creating gaps in his/her learning. A good understanding of the work and good progress can only take place when the child is in the classroom regularly and on time.
Some absences are allowed by law and are known as “authorised absences”. For example: if a child is ill, religious observance.
We realise that there are rare, unavoidable occasions when there might be a particular problem that causes your child to be absent. Please let us know and we shall try to deal with it sympathetically.
Where there is no explanation for an absence or where the explanation or reason for the absence is considered unsatisfactory the school will not be able to authorise the absences. These are known as “unauthorised absences”
A child’s unauthorised absences are an offence for the parent. Examples of unauthorised absence are: Going for a family day out; sleeping in after a late night; Going shopping; because it is your child’s birthday, frequent claims of illnesses a reason for absence or a Parent’s illness.
Leave of absence in term time
Amendments to the 2006 attendance regulations make it clear that Head teacher may not grant any leave of absence during term time for Holidays. An application can be made if there are exceptional (and documented) circumstances. Parents sometimes confuse telling the school as being good enough, this is not so, you will need explicit permission from the school for any leave
- If a child is not present at the beginning of a school term, we cannot guarantee that a place will remain available on their return to school. You should make definite arrangements so that you return in good time. If you experience delays in returning from a trip within the UK or abroad for whatever reason, (although parent usually claim illness) the school will require documentary evidence in English or translated accompanied with proof of original return dates, i.e. tickets or travel documentation.
- If term time leave is taken without prior permission from the school, the absence will be unauthorised and you may be liable for a fixed-penalty fine or other legal action and in certain instances the child may also lose their school place.
Unauthorised Absences are reported to the Local Authority. The School Attendance Service may contact you where unauthorised absence continues to be a problem. Unauthorised absence could result in a Fixed Penalty Fine or other legal action.
- It is important to be on time as the first part of the school day is used to give out instructions, set or group children or organise schoolwork for the rest of that day. It is also a time for children to settle down by reading or another quiet activity so they are ready for lessons immediately after registration.
- Morning registration is at 8.50 am but pupils can be in class from 8.40 Monday to Thursday Soft Start to ensure lessons can start on time. This is the time your child must be in the line in the playground. You need to ensure your child is coming through the school gate by latest 8.45 am. The morning play session gives children and parents an opportunity to socialise and for the children to gain a deeper sense of community and belonging.
- Late arrivals are disruptive to the whole class and often embarrassing for your child. We take the view there are no late children, only late parents.
- Arrival (particularly if the lateness is frequent/persistent) after the close of registration will be marked as unauthorised absence code ‘U’ in line with the DfE guidance; this is effectively an absence.
- All lateness is recorded daily. The number of minutes late and the reason for lateness if known will also be recorded. This information can be made available to the courts in the form of a report should a prosecution be the outcome of repeated lateness.
Some children/classes will be re-grouped for targeted learning/catch up. The curriculum is designed to be progressive, new topics are often introduced at the start of the week and the majority of teaching takes place during the morning. (Each day’s learning builds on the day before.)
Collection from School
Please collect your child promptly at the end of the school day or from any after school activity. Where late collection is persistent and/or significantly late, the school is obliged to take any uncollected pupil to a place of safety and to share concerns with other agencies including the Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service (formally Social Services). If one is available, the school might/will place a child into the after school club and provide the parent/Carer with the bill.
If your child is leaving our school (other than to go to High School) parents are asked to:
- Give the school comprehensive information about their new address, plans including any date of a move and telephone numbers, your child’s new school and the start date when known. This should be submitted to our school in writing
When pupils leave and we do not have information, about where they have gone, then your child is considered to be a ‘Child Missing Education’. This means that the Local Authority has a legal duty to carry out investigations, which will include liaising with Ealing Children's Integrated Response Service (formerly Social Services), the Police and other agencies, to try and locate your child.
By giving us the above information, these investigations can be avoided.
Parents have a legal duty to ensure the regular and full time attendance at school of registered pupils (Education Act 1996). This policy is based on the law and on Best Practice guidance produced by the DfE and the Local Authority. The School Attendance Service aims to work with schools and families to promote good attendance and avoid legal action. However, in some cases, parents are prosecuted (taken to court) or have to pay a Fixed Penalty (fine) if these absences continue.
We value your support in helping us to maintain the high standards to which we always aspire.
“Every day counts and Every Child Matters