Please be aware the “six month time period” for accruing unauthorised absences is no longer applicable. Schools are required to monitor attendance and report an accumulation of 10 or more unauthorised absences (5 days) over any time period.
All leave of absence from school, can only be agreed by the school in advance so it is important that you apply in writing, as far in advance as possible (we recommend at least 3 school weeks) by using a Request for Absence form. If you choose to take your child out of school without authorisation from the school and a child accumulates 10 or more unauthorised sessions, the equivalent to 5 school days, within any time frame, parents/carers will make themselves liable to receiving a Penalty Notice per parent/carer, per child, or made the subject of court proceedings, under section 444 Education Act 1996.
Schools are required by law to notify the Local Authority if a pupil has a number of unauthorised absences. Unauthorised can be acquired when:-
- Leave has been requested, but the circumstances are such that the school is unable to authorise the leave and it is taken anyway.
- Leave is not requested and/or the school has grounds to believe that the child has been taken out of school for an avoidable reason (eg. family holiday). Only the Head teacher can authorise an absence. It is not the schools responsibility to seek confirmation of reasons of absence, but Parent’s responsibility to provide evidence. Where children are reported as sick, but the school later discovers or reasonably believes that the reason given for the absence is not genuine then registration codes may be amended accordingly.
- A child continually arrives late after the registration period has closed at 9.30am.
TARGET ATTENDANCE FOR 2017/18- 96.3%
Annual Attendance: Target and achievement
How much time has been missed?
The information which follows is for the year ending July 2017
Attendance Figures: On roll 203
Percentage Attendance for Academic Year 16/17 - 95.97%
Missed - authorised 3.46%
Unauthorised - 0.57%
Please make sure that your child is absent only in unavoidable situations. Any absence due to sickness should be reported between 8.40 am and 9.00 am (or a message left on the answer phone) on the first day of absence. A note must be supplied to the class teacher after each absence, stating the reason and length of absence.
UNAVOIDABLE PLANNED ABSENCE
Planned absences for medical appointment ect., should be requested using an Absence Request Form, available from the school office. Please try to make appoinments outside of school hours wherever possible and give as much notice as possible, to enable teachers to plan accordingly.
AN EXPLANATION OF THE PROTOCOL ON PLANNED ABSENCE IN TERM TIME
The Head can only authorise absence for exceptional circumstances. The Head decides the length of the absence which can be authorised in the light of the reasons for the request being made. The maximum of ten days is no longer applicable and has not been for some time. A child who attends for 100% of the available school days is more likely to succeed at school.
The Government strongly encourages parents to take their holidays during the thirteen weeks when the school is closed, rather than during term time. Most schools do not authorise any term time absence at all. All schools need to have a policy on attendance, approved by the Governors, which is available under the Policies section of the website.
Already established acceptable reasons for absence are:
• Illness of the child
• Bereavement of a close relative
• Religious observance
• Unavoidable medical appointments
The school has the option to consider a list of exceptional circumstances which is particular to that school and its community but may be shared with a number of local schools in discussion with other head teachers. For those circumstances which MAY be considered to permit the parent to take a holiday in term time, written evidence is required at the time of application e.g. a letter from employer or doctor.
• If a pupil’s attendance is below 96% (this includes absence for illness or other reasons), then an absence request is unlikely to be authorised. In the autumn term, schools usually make a decision based on the previous year’s attendance.
• Parents should be informed that the absence is not authorised and, if the absence is taken, then a fine may be imposed.
• If the parent goes ahead and the child is absent, the school and the Attendance Improvement Officer should seek to impose a fine.
• Information about the stance being taken will be regularly included in the schools newsletter.
Schools also consider times in the academic year when they will not authorise any absences. These dates usually include things like:
E.g. Early September (settling into new class)
Y6 – March, April and May for SATs
Y2 – May, for SATs etc.
Please be assured that we strive to work with our parents and families at all times and listen and respond to the needs of our community. However, there are times when we must do what we feel is best for the school and the child even though this may conflict with parents' wishes.
We monitor each childs attendance, those achieving 100% attendance for each term and again for the whole academic year are presented with an attendance certificate during our celebrations assemblies.