At Tyntesfield Primary school our vision for attendance is to ‘maximise the attendance rate of every child so that they are in school, supported and enabled to reach their full potential’.
We recognise that excellent pupil attendance and punctuality are essential to raising standards and pupil attainment. In order for children to achieve their potential, pupils must be highly motivated to learn and keen and eager to attend school and regular, punctual attendance establishes these good habits that will support them throughout their lives.
For our children to gain the greatest benefit from their education it is vital that they attend regularly and be at school, on time, every day the school is open unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable. Any absence affects the pattern of a child’s schooling and regular absence will seriously affect their learning. Any pupil’s absence or later arrival disrupts teaching routines and so may affect the learning of others in the same class.
Attendance during one school year …
equals this number of days absence …
which is approximately this many weeks absent …
which means this number of lessons missed.
Every Day Counts
PERSISTENT ABSENTEE –
To achieve this, the trustees, governors and staff are committed to working in partnership with parents to ensure that the school achieves a minimum of 97% attendance throughout the school. Ensuring a child’s regular attendance at school is a parental responsibility and permitting absence from school without a good reason creates an offence in law and may result in prosecution.
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Helping to create a pattern of regular attendance is everybody’s responsibility - parents, pupils and all members of school staff.
To help us all to focus on this we will:
At Tyntesfield, we class a pupil as a ‘persistent absentee’ when they miss 10% or more schooling across the school year for whatever reason. Absence at this level is doing considerable damage to any child’s education and we need parent’s fullest support and co-operation to tackle this.
PA pupils are tracked and monitored carefully we also combine this with academic tracking where absence affects attainment. All PA pupils are highlighted to our EWO and an identified plan of action agreed.
If a child is absent the parent/carer must follow the following procedures:
Contact us as soon as possible on each day of absence before 9.15am. The school has an answer phone available to leave a message if nobody is available to take the call
Or they can call into school and report to reception.
If a child is absent we will:
Every half-day absence from school has to be classified by the school (not by the parents), as either AUTHORISED or UNAUTHORISED. This is why information about the cause of any absence is always required.
Authorised absences are mornings or afternoons away from school for a good reason like illness, medical/dental appointments which unavoidably fall in school time, emergencies or other unavoidable cause.
Unauthorised absences are those which the school does not consider reasonable and for which no “leave" has been given. This type of absence can lead to the Authority using sanctions and/or legal proceedings. This includes:
Whilst any child may be off school because they are ill, sometimes they can be reluctant to attend school. Any problems with regular attendance are best sorted out between the school, the parents and the child. If a parent thinks their child is reluctant to attend school then we will work with that family to understand the root problem and provide support for the child and the family.
Parents are expected to contact school at an early stage and to work with the staff in resolving any problems together. This is nearly always successful.
If difficulties cannot be sorted out in this way, we may refer the child to the Education Welfare Officer from the Local Authority. He/she will also try to resolve the situation by agreement but, if other ways of trying to improve the child’s attendance have failed and unauthorized absences persist, these Officers can use sanctions such as Penalty Notices or prosecutions in the
Alternatively, parents or children may wish to contact the EWO themselves to ask for help or information. They are independent of the school and will give impartial advice. Their telephone number is available from the school office or by contacting the Local Authority.
“Head teachers should only authorise leave of absence in exceptional circumstances. If a head teacher grants a leave request, it will be for the head teacher to determine the length of time that the child can be away from school. Leave is unlikely, however, to be granted for the purposes of a family holiday as a norm.” School Attendance Guidance, DfE
At Tyntesfield any absence, other than for genuine illness or emergency medical attention, will most likely be classed as unauthorised unless exceptional circumstances. As a Trust we do not authorise days absence for holidays – holidays are not exceptional circumstances.
Where an unauthorised holiday is taken in term time, it is likely a request will be made to the LA to issue a fine.
Parents may choose to complete an ‘Exceptional Circumstances Form’ stating why they are requesting to remove their child during term time. This is given to the Head of School. Only exceptional circumstances will this be authorised. The decision whether to authorise an ‘exceptional circumstance’ will be made by the Head of School
We will not agree leave during term time under the following circumstances:
Good time keeping is a vital life skill which will help our children as they progress through their school life and out into the wider world.
When a child arrives on time:
· Registration takes place quickly and smoothly
· An activity is put on the board or out around the classroom
· The day gets off to a good start for everyone
· Everyone hears the information given and is included in important explanations and discussions. This ensures that everyone knows what to do and what is expected of them
When a child arrives late:
· It interrupts concentration
· It wastes valuable learning time
· The teacher repeats information / instructions whilst others have to wait
· The late child is at an immediate disadvantage because they may have missed important teaching points, missed discussions where ideas are shared and will be generally unsettled/embarrassed.
It is the parent/carers responsibility:
· To ensure that their children arrive to school on time. Our doors open at 8:45am providing a 15 minute window for the children to arrive. This is sufficient time for all pupils to get to their classroom. School officially starts at 9am and the doors are closed at that time. From 9am, any children arriving MUST report to the main entrance and they will receive a late mark.
How we manage lateness:
The school day starts at 9.00am and we expect our children to be in the classroom at 8.55am ready to start their learning. The whistle is blown at 8.55am although the door and gate into school are not shut until 9am.
The pupil entrance gate into school and classroom doors are not shut until 9am. Any child arriving from 9am, must enter school via the main entrance where they will be given a late mark and parent/carers must sign each child in on our inventory system.
At 9.45am the registers will be closed. If a child arrives after that time they will receive a mark that shows them to be on site, but this will not count as a present mark and it will mean they have an unauthorised absence. This may mean that parents could face the possibility of a Penalty Notice if the problem persists.
If a child has a persistent late record you will be asked to meet with the Head of School to resolve the problem, but we encourage you to approach us at any time if you are having problems getting your child to school on time as we are here to help.
We will encourage good punctuality by being good role models to our children.
Pupils very much enjoy coming to school... They feel safe in the stimulating environment into which they are warmly welcomed... One pupil stated that, ‘You can be yourself here.’