Attendance

School Information

SCHOOL ATTENDANCE POLICY

Constant monitoring of children's attendance

At Parkgate Academy we view excellent attendance and punctuality as vitally important for the learning and progress of the children. Your child’s time at school is very valuable they only get the chance once! It is therefore very important that they miss as little school as possible.

Research shows that children who have good school attendance are more likely to do well in the future. Regular attendance also helps children to develop their confidence and make and keep lasting friendships.

Improving Attendance remains our biggest target area as an Academy. Our target for 2017/2018 is 97% which is in line with the National Average figure for primary schools.

Thank you for your support in getting your child into school on time everyday.

Punctuality

All children who arrive after the classroom doors have closed at 8.45am in KS2 and 8.55am in F2/KS1 must report to the main office. Lateness will be recorded as follows:

KS2 8.55am – 9.30am – L Code (Late)
F2 and KS1 9.05am – 9.30am – L Code (Late)
F2, KS1 and KS2 9.30am onwards – U Code (Unauthorised)

Attendance Team

Mr C Baker and Mrs E Leivers are there to support you if you have any difficulties with attendance as well as ensure your child attends school regularly and punctually.

Reporting Absences

Promoting attendance and punctuality

Any absences should be reported to the school before 8.45am on the first day of absence, and every day that follows. Telephone: 01623 860584

Authorised and Unauthorised Absences

School can only authorise absences in the case of genuine illness, hospital/medical appointments or other personal exceptional circumstances. We CANNOT authorise absences for reasons such as: shopping, haircuts, birthdays, other family member illness, visiting relatives, no clean uniform or getting up late. Where 3 unauthorised days of absence are recorded the school will issue a Penalty Notice Warning letter which then will trigger a fine if attendance does not improve over the next 12 weeks.

Illness
Where absence is sickness related the school may request medical certification particularly where the absence lasts more than 3 days or where attendance drops below 90%. If no medical evidence is received then the absence will be marked as unauthorised and could result in a referral to the Family Service or forwarded to the Local Authority for a fixed penalty fine.

Medical Appointment
If your child is absent from school due to a medical appointment, please could you bring the letter or an appointment card so that the office can photocopy it for your child’s record. Please ensure the school office receives a copy of medical evidence in order for the absence to be authorised. Where possible can we please request medical appointments are made out of school hours, or at the very least the beginning or end of the day.

Bereavement
Absence due to bereavement of a close family member would be classed as an authorised absence on compassionate grounds and we would also authorise a day for a family funeral but please always contact the school office and inform them if your child needs to have time off in this circumstance.

From September 2013 the Principal no longer has the authority to authorise absences for the purpose of taking a family holiday except in exceptional circumstances. We therefore ask parents and carers to avoid booking holidays during term time. The school will be closed week commencing 27th June 2016. This will give parents/carers the opportunity to take a holiday during term time when there would be potential cost savings. As a result of this there will be a zero tolerance approach towards parents taking their children out of school at any other time. If however you believe there are exceptional reasons why your child needs to be absent from school you need to complete a Leave of Absence Application Form, which is available from our Attendance Officer.

A child who is absent from school for 2 weeks (10 days) will have less than 95% attendance for that year before taking into account any further days lost due to illness.

Where a child’s level or pattern of absences becomes a concern we will discuss this with the parent or carer and may involve the Targeted Support Service.

ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Parents and Carers
  • To ensure your child attends every day unless they are unwell.
  • To inform school by telephone on the FIRST day of absence because of illness, and everyday that follows.
  • Try and arrange Medical appointments outside of school time.
  • Where medical appointments cannot be taken out of school hours medical evidence is taken to the school office to authorise the absence.
  • To bring and collect your children promptly. If your child is late they must be signed into school at the main office.
  • Holidays are avoided during term time.
  • A letter to the Principal is sent at least one month in advance if you believe it is unavoidable to take your child on holiday during term time.
  • Ensure that school are informed if someone different will be collecting your child.

Roles and Responsiblities

The Parkgate Academy
  • To ensure parents/carers understand the importance of punctuality and attendance.
  • To monitor attendance and punctuality weekly.
  • To contact parents/carers if no reason has been received for a child’s absence.
  • To inform parents/carers if a child’s attendance falls below 90% or if poor punctuality is having a significant effect upon a child’s education.
  • To write and meet parents if attendance is poor or punctuality does not improve after initial letter.
  • School to offer advice and support families.
  • To contact Family Services/Local Authority if unauthorised absences persist.
  • To provide a range of incentives to encourage excellent attendance. Currently they include, certificates, class medals, a Family Prize Draw and competitions

Important Statistics

➢ 95% attendance means that your child has missed two weeks of school.
➢ 90% attendance means that your child has missed four weeks of school/half a day every week.
➢ 80% attendance means that your child has missed eight weeks of school.
➢ Attendance of below 90% over five years is equivalent to your child missing half a year of school.
➢ Attendance below 80% over five years means that your child misses a whole year of school.

➢ Research suggests that 17 missed school days a year equals a drop in GCSE grade (Department for children, schools and families).
➢ Only a quarter of pupils will achieve GCSE grades A to C if their attendance is below 90%.
➢ Pupils who are frequently absent from school are more likely to become involved or be a victim of crime and anti-social behaviour.
➢ Poor attendance suggests to future employers that the individual is unreliable. Get into good habits early.
➢ Missing 10% (about 18 days) can make it harder to learn to read.
➢ One of the most effective ways for providing pathways out of poverty is by doing what it takes to get children into school every day.