Contacting the School
Please get in touch with us as soon as possible to inform us of any absence on the same day.
To report any absence, inform us of any future absence or advise us of changes to contact details, please contact us and ask to speak to the Attendance Office, who will take the necessary information. Any other issues or concerns should be made to your child's form tutor, who will deal with these in the first instance.
If you have previously reported your child's absence for illness, please call in every subsequent day to keep us informed.
The timings of the day and lateness
The school day starts with registration at 8.45 am. We expect all students to arrive at the school by 8.35 am and to be at their relevant areas for tutor or assembly by 8.40 am.
Excellent attendance is essential because:
We want all students to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the school. Evidence shows that there is a direct link between attendance and achievement. Students not in school are more at risk of failing to achieve. In addition, they run a greater risk of getting involved in crime or becoming victims of crime.
The law requires that parents/carers are responsible for ensuring that their children attend school and are on time. This guide will clearly explain our expectations regarding attendance and punctuality and how we will deal with any problems or issues with your son/daughter in this area.
Attendance and Punctuality
We expect your son/daughter to be in school every day on time unless:
- They are too ill to attend (Medical evidence required)
- They have a medical appointment that can only be made during School time (Medical evidence required)
This is where your son/daughter has been absent, and the absence has not been explained, or we do not consider the reason for the absence to be acceptable.
This occurs when your son/daughter misses school without authorisation or registers for school but does not then attend lessons. We will not accept truancy and will inform you of any suspected truancy. We will place your son/daughter in detention for a single incident of truancy or deliberate lateness to lessons.
Leave of absence in Term Time
If you require your son/daughter to be absent from school for extreme circumstances, you will need to request a leave of absence application form from the Attendance Team.
The Headteacher will consider these requests on an individual basis, taking into account the student's attendance record and the circumstances surrounding the request.
What will we do to monitor attendance and punctuality?
- We will contact you on the first day of absence, at home or work, if you have not previously informed us of the reason why your son/daughter is absent.
- Send you an absence letter if we have not been able to contact you after 3 days.
- Send you attendance and punctuality statistics each term as part of our progress reports.
- Contact you and arrange a meeting to discuss any concerns we have over attendance and persistent issues with punctuality.
Fixed Penalty Notices
- Any parent taking their son/daughter on a leave of absence during term time without the correct authorisation will be issued a fixed penalty notice. A warning letter will be sent upon application
- Any student with less than 95% attendance or with 5 or more sessions (2.5 days) of unauthorised absence will be sent a warning letter, and if no improvement is made, then a fixed penalty notice fine will be issued
Guidance for parents/carers
- Reinforce our expectations regarding full attendance and excellent punctuality with your son/daughter.
- Support staff when we take action over punctuality or truancy, for example, issuing detentions.
- Let us know of any change in contact details immediately.
- Contact the school to inform us about any absence, as soons as possible
- Ensure that your child completes any work that has been sent home or that they catch up with any work that they have missed
- Talk to your child about school.
Why talking about school is important.
Talking with your child about the school day shows you're interested in what's going on in their life. This interest boosts your child's mental health, happiness and wellbeing. It can also have a very positive effect on your child's behaviour and achievement. It shows your child that you value school and education, encouraging them to value it too.
Talking together about school also helps you know more about what's expected of your child at school and how they learn and handle challenges. It can help you understand when your child feels less interested in school or has problems.
When you're in touch with their thoughts and feelings about school, you are in a position to identify problems before they escalate. You can then work on challenges together and work in partnership with your child's tutor and pastoral team.
Discussing school issues – like homework or friendship problems – is also a great opportunity for you to highlight your family values: things like respect for self and others, how you are resilient in your outlook and approach to life, and the ambitions and achievements you have for yourself and your family.
If your child is having problems at school, don't hesitate to get in touch with your child's tutor or pastoral welfare leader. If you are unsure who that is, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your concern, and our administration team will forward it to the relevant staff.
Strategies for talking about school with your child
When your child first gets home from school in the afternoon, they'll probably be tired and hungry or thinking about other things. So easing the transition from school or after-school activities to home can help your child feel more like talking.
Let your child know you're glad to see them and talk about non-school topics for a while. It's best to avoid asking your child many questions straight away – this can be overwhelming for them. Save questions about homework for later, as this can take the pressure off.
Every day will be different. Sometimes your child will be open and enthusiastic; on other days, they may be reluctant to talk. Judge their mood and pick the right moment to talk.
Specific, simple and positive questions about their day can get them talking. It's good to ask open-ended questions that elicit more than a yes or no answer.
- What's the news from school today?
- What was fun?
- What did you like best at school today?
- Who did you hang out with today?
- What subjects did you do today?
- What topics are you working on in science at the moment?
Ask about links between schoolwork and future plans.
At secondary school, your child might be more open to discussing the links between their schoolwork and what they want to do when they finish school.
So, you could try focusing on future plans rather than asking about your child's day-to-day activities. For example, 'How's the piece you were completing in Art coming along? Are you still thinking you might want to get into Art and Design after school?'