20 September 2022
We are writing this letter to all parents and carers about attendance to provide you with a clear outline about the importance of excellent attendance in this school year, especially in the light of the pandemic and interruptions to education our pupils have faced.
The Government, The Children’s Endeavour Trust and the school are committed to promoting high levels of attendance and taking action where there are unsatisfactory reasons for absence. Unbroken attendance at school is important for learning. However, there will be times when absence is unavoidable and acceptable. This letter explains the approach we are following to manage attendance.
Types of Absence
Each absence is classed as authorised or unauthorised. Valid absences are coded as authorised. When no explanation for absence or unacceptable reasons are given, absences are coded as unauthorised.
The following reasons are not acceptable:
It is always our intention to support and work with you to address any non-attendance issues, however, unauthorised absences will be acted on. Unauthorised absences could be subject to legal intervention in the form of a fixed penalty notice from the Local Authority, or Attendance FastTrack Management which could potentially lead to a court appearance.
Illness and First Day Calling
If your child is unable to attend school through illness you should inform us by telephone on the first day of absence before 9.00am. Alternatively you can email us at email@example.com or visit in person at the office. It is useful for you to tell us the expected day of return too. If you do not report an absence to us, we have a duty to contact you to ensure we know of your child’s whereabouts. This is a safeguarding measure.
When your child is absent through illness or medical appointments this will normally be counted as authorised. Where we have concerns over excessive absence patterns through illness we may need to discuss this with parents in order to gain a better understanding of the problems and to offer support – for example by involving the School Health Service.
We would expect these to be arranged outside school hours, but we know this is not always possible. Please indicate to us in advance whether s/he will be returning for the midday meal. Medical and dental appointments count as authorised absences.
There are some occasions e.g. bereavements, family problems, etc where it may be inappropriate for children to attend school; we will always be sympathetic to such needs but it is important we communicate about these circumstances.
I trust you understand the rationale behind this national approach to attendance and look forward to working together with you for the benefit of your child this year at school.
Mrs A Hall
Children’s Endeavour Trust Educational Welfare Officer