We expect children to attend school regularly and to be on time. We believe good attendance contributes directly to the standards the children achieve, as does punctuality. In keeping with national policy, we strong discourage any absence for holidays during term time and are unable to authorise it. Parents are asked to consider very carefully the implications for their own child and others before making a decision to remove their child from the education that is provided in school in term time. Children should only be removed in exceptional circumstances. Legislation that became law on 1st September 2013 states that Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Applications for leave of absence for exceptional circumstances must be made in advance, please speak to the school office who will provide you with the necessary form.
The following points should be considered:
- Taking a child out of school is disruptive to their learning at the time, before and after the event.
- Absence may be disruptive to others in the class.
- Children away from school miss the scheduled work and will not be able to maintain progress. Groupings may have to be changed as a result.
- Confidence and self esteem may be damaged as the child no longer feels part of the class and the learning situation has moved forward without them.
- Taking children out of school conveys a hidden message about values that are placed on education ie a holiday/special occasion is more important than the learning taking place. This attitude may be adopted by the child.
- With effect from 1st September 2019 parents may receive a fine from the local authority for unauthorised holidays in term time.
Why is attendance important?
- School ensures that children have the best start in life.
- Good attendance gives them more chance of succeeding in life both academically and socially.
- The more school children miss the harder it is to catch up.
- Statistics show that those with persistent absence fail to achieve good grades in their GCSE’s.
- Poor achievement gives children less opportunities and less options when they leave school.
- The suggested acceptable level of attendance is 96%.
- If your child’s attendance is 90% then they are absent for the equivalent of half day every week.
- 90% attendance means your child misses four weeks of school.
- If attendance continues at only 90% then over their time in primary school your child will miss the equivalent of half a year of education.
Tips to ensure your child has good attendance
- Read all school communications. Check your child’s bag for letters, ensure we have your correct email address.
- Make dental/medical appointments out of school time where possible.
- Encourage and show interest, ask about their day.
- Know the name of your child’s class teacher.
- Do not take holidays during term time.
- Children get upset if they are late for school.
- Children miss the morning welcome and instructions for the day if they are late.
- Being late for school impacts on your child’s friendship groups.
- 5 minutes late each day equals 3 days education lost per year. 30 minutes late each day equals 19 days education lost per year.
The staff of Lyne and Longcross CofE (A) Primary School and Nursery are committed, in partnership with the parents/carers, students, governors and the Local Authority, to building a school which serves the community and of which the community is proud. Lyne and Longcross has worked closely together with our partner schools in the North Runnymede Learning Partnership to bring ensure a consistent approach to our attendance policies.
Regular attendance is key to achieving the five outcomes of Every Child Matters: staying healthy, enjoying and achieving, keeping safe, contributing to the community, and social and economic well-being. Research clearly demonstrates the link between regular attendance and educational progress and attainment.
We are committed to encouraging and supporting parents in ensuring their children achieve maximum possible attendance; should any problems arise that prevent this, we aim to identify early and act on promptly.
Lyne and Longcross expects that pupils will attend 100% of the time unless the absence is authorised by the Headteacher (or delegated person in the school).
In cases where a pupil’s attendance drops below 95% or a pattern of absence begins to develop, the school will initiate the following stages. Be advised that Lyne and Longcross will attempt to support and work effectively alongside the parents at all stages to ensure an improvement in attendance.
Stage 1 – A standard, formal letter will be sent by Lyne and Longcross CofE (A) Primary School to the parents/carers of a pupil where attendance has dropped below 95%. The letter will outline the school’s expectation that there is an immediate improvement in attendance whilst providing an offer of support to any parent/carer who may require it. A three week period of close monitoring will take place from the day of the letter.
Stage 2 – Where no improvement is forthcoming at the end of the three week monitoring period, a second formal letter will be sent by Lyne and Longcross CofE (A) Primary School to the parents/carers. This letter will register our continued concerns and inform the parents/carers that no authorised absence will be considered without medical evidence being provided. With immediate improvement expected, another three week monitoring period will begin.
Stage 3 – When there remains no improvement in attendance, the school will send a third and final formal letter informing the parents/carers that a meeting at the school is required to discuss the continual poor attendance and to agree on an action plan. Parents/carers will be asked to contact the office and arrange a meeting with a nominated member of the staff within two weeks of receipt of the letter. Failure to do so will result in the school moving immediately to stage 5.
Stage 4 – A formal meeting will take place at Lyne and Longcross CofE (A) Primary School between appropriate representatives of the school and parents/carers of the pupil. At this meeting, an action plan will be agreed and a further offer of support and help will be made. Upon an action plan being agreed, a final three week monitoring period will begin.
Stage 5 – Following this final three week monitoring period, if attendance has not adequately improved the school will make an immediate referral to the Inclusion Officer (IO) requesting their intervention.