Attendance information for parents
We have tried to make our information and expectations about pupil attendance clear and accessible for parents.
To this end we would ask that you are familiar with the contents of this letter that was sent to all parents at the beginning of this academic year:
Expectations and daily routines
At Hill View, we recognise the clear connection between regular attendance and achievement and will, therefore, work in partnership with parents / carers, the school’s governing body and the Local Authority to ensure that pupils achieve maximum possible attendance, raise standards, and promote punctuality of all pupils. Research has shown that children who are persistently late or absent soon fall behind with their learning. Children who are absent from school frequently develop large gaps in their learning which will impact on their progress and their ability to meet age related learning expectations. A child, whose attendance drops to 90% each year, will over their time at primary school, have missed two whole terms of learning.
The principle of a graduated response underpins this policy. Expectations for attendance are clear and where thresholds are crossed the school will endeavour to take every opportunity to work with and support parents / carers to improve pupil attendance.
- The School Gates are opened at 8.35am and are closed at 8.50am.
- Children who arrive after 8.50am must be signed in by school for purposes of emergency evacuation etc.
- Pupils who arrive between 8.50am and 9.00am will be marked as ‘late’ but counted as present for that session (Code L).
- Pupils who arrive after the register has closed at 9.00am and parent provides a satisfactory explanation will be marked as ‘authorised absent’ for that session.
- Pupils who arrive after the register has closed and the parent fails to provide a satisfactory explanation will be marked as ‘unauthorised absent’ for that session (Code U)
There are two registration sessions for each day. A morning session and an afternoon session. The school day ends at 3.15pm. The school gates open from 3.15pm to 3.30pm. Children not collected by 3.30pm will be taken to the school office where they will be supervised until they are collected.
Expectations for parents and carers
Expectations on parents / carers
- Parents are responsible in law for ensuring that their children of compulsory school age receive an efficient education suitable to their age, ability, aptitude and any special educational needs that they may Most parents fulfil this responsibility by registering their children at a school.
- Parents whose children are registered at a school are responsible for ensuring that their children attend and stay at school.
Parents are also responsible for:
- ensuring that their children are punctual and know the importance of good attendance.
- instilling in their children an appreciation of the importance of attending school regularly.
- impressing upon their children the need to observe the school’s code of conduct.
- informing the school on the first day of absence, by 9.30am at the latest.
- providing the school with an explanation for the absence on the day of absence.
- informing the school of any changes to their contact details.
- Providing full emergency contact details and expect them to be used if no contact can be made during absences.
- taking an active interest in their children’s school career, praising and encouraging good work and behaviour and attending parent’s evenings and other relevant meetings.
- working in partnership with the school to resolve issues which may lead to non-attendance.
- avoiding arranging medical/dental appointments during school hours.
- not booking holidays during term-time.
- treating staff with respect.
- actively supporting the work of the school.
- calling on staff for help when they need it.
- communicating as early as possible circumstances which may affect absence or require support.
- Proactively engage with support offered.
Absence in Term Time information for parents and application form
Absence in Term Time- Information for parent / carer’s
What is good attendance?
At Hill View Primary Academy our aspiration that all pupils attend school at least 97%+, unless there are chronic health conditions or other specific mitigating circumstances.
What does the law say?
Changes to legislation which came into force in September 2013 made clear that Schools may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. There is a form that needs to be completed to request absence of a pupil from school. The Government says that all children should attend the school that they are registered at every day unless:
- They are too ill to go in.
- They have permission from the school or there are other arrangements agreed by the school.
When will absence requests be authorised?
- Government guidance means that at Hill View we are only permitted to authorise absence in exceptional circumstances, and this can only be done by the Head or Deputy.
- The Head or Deputy will consider each absence request individually against the guidance from the Government and decide whether to grant the They will also decide how many days would be authorised if an extended absence is requested.
It is the school’s discretion to decide which circumstances are ‘exceptional. Examples of circumstances that are not exceptional may include:
Examples of exceptional circumstances where a request for an absence may be authorised:
What if I take my child on an unauthorised absence?
Please be aware that unauthorised holiday absence of 5 days or more can now result in the issuing of a Penalty Notice which carries a fine of £60 or if not paid after 21 days, then the fine is doubled to £120 and court prosecution if unpaid after 28 days. Penalty Notices are served per parent, per child.
If there are exceptional circumstances behind your request, you should write these on the form along with the purpose of the leave of absence. Absence will either be authorised or unauthorised by the school. Should you wish to discuss your request further you should request an appointment with the Attendance Lead in the first instance.
Why completing this form is important?
It is important that you are honest and inform the school where your child is if they are not at school or if you plan for them to be absent from school. We are committed to work with parent/ carers to ensure that every child attends well and makes good progress at our school. We have to comply with the legal frameworks set out by the government and this includes ensuring that we know where your child is whilst they attend our school.
Attendance is important to ensure that your child has the same education and opportunities as their peers, does not miss out on or have to catch up with important learning that can affect educational progress and achievement.
Examples of absence that is authorised
Absences will be authorised if:
- The pupil is absent with leave as agreed by the Headteacher.
- The pupil is ill and has not been asked to provide proof of absence.
- The absence occurs on a day exclusively set aside for religious observance by the religious body to which the pupil’s parent belongs.
- The pupil is the child of Traveller parents who are known to be travelling for occupational purposes and have agreed this with the school but it is not known whether the pupil is attending alternative provision.
- There is a close family bereavement.
- Leave of absence has been applied for in advance and has been granted because of exceptional circumstances relating to the application (parents cannot expect, as of right, that the school will grant leave of absence).
- Leave of absence to allow a pupil to take part in a performance within the meaning of s37 of the Children and Young Persons Act 1963 © for which a child performance licence has been HCC will not issue a child performance licence where absence is required without the written permission of the Headteacher.
Only the school can authorise an absence. The fact that a parent has provided a note or other explanation (telephone call or personal contact) in relation to a particular absence does not, of itself, oblige the school to accept it, if the school does not accept the explanation offered as a valid reason for absence. If, after further investigation doubt remains about the explanation offered – or when no explanation is forthcoming at all – the absence will be treated as unauthorised and the parent informed.
It is important that if parents/carers decide to send their child to a different school that they inform Hill View Primary in writing as soon as possible. A pupil will not be removed from our school roll until the following information has been received and investigated:
- The date the pupil will be leaving the school and starting the next.
- The address of the new school; and,
- A new home address if appropriate is supplied
The pupil’s school records will then be sent to the new school. If the school has not been informed of the above information, the family will be referred to the Education Welfare Service and after four weeks the pupil will be registered on the S2S website as a Pupil Missing Education.
Elective Home Education
All children have the right of fair access to a suitable and effective full-time education, however there is no legal requirement for this to take place in a school setting. Families are permitted to provide an education for their children at home if they choose to do so, rather than sending them to school full-time (Section 7 of the Education Act 1996). This is referred to as Elective Home Education (EHE).
The school will not actively encourage parents to Electively Home Educate.
If the school receives information that a parent is considering Elective Home Education, then they must inform the Local Authority. If a parent submits written application to remove a pupil from the school roll the school must notify the Local Authority at the point at which the regulation for removal has been met.
The Local Authority will then follow their policies and procedures in relation to Elective Home Education.
Where a pupil has an EHCP then the pupil can only be removed from roll with the Local Authority authorisation and therefore an emergency annual review should be called by the school to address placement.