We regard attendance as being an important issue. The importance we attach to attendance, reflects our view, that education is crucial to the development of every child.
We believe that:
- attendance is important because of the link between regular attendance and raising attainment
- regular attendance is necessary, so that all pupils may reap the full benefits of a broad and balanced curriculum, extra-curricula activities and feel part of our school community
- regular attendance is necessary if we are to ensure equal opportunities and equal access for all our pupils.
We recognise that while parents have a legal duty to ensure that their child attends school regularly, we also have an important role to play and believe in a partnership approach to the issue.
We are committed to helping our pupils understand that:
- learning is important
- regular attending, being punctual and arriving in a state of readiness for learning is valued
- they are missed, when they are not here
- hard work, commitment and perseverance is rewarded
- problems leading to non-attendance are taken seriously- we listen
- excellent attendance and punctuality is rewarded and is something to aspire to.
We recognise excellent attendance through stickers (weekly), wristbands (termly) and books (annually).
If your child is unable to attend school please phone the office to let us know. We need to ensure that something hasn’t happened to them that you don’t know about on the way to school. Help us keep your child safe.
Please note that birthdays, shopping and being tired are not legitimate reasons for missing school and these are registered as unauthorised absences. Please try to make medical appointments for after school times.
Holidays/ Leave in School Time
Parents do not have a legal right to take their children out of school. It is always a head teacher’s decision whether or not to allow you to take your child out of school during term time. If you do not ask their permission in advance, or it is not granted and you take your child out of school anyway, this will be recorded as an unauthorised absence.
Head teachers may authorise an absence from school during term time if there are exceptional circumstances. Exceptional circumstances may include
- the death or terminal illness of a person in the immediate family.
- service personnel and other employees who cannot take leave outside term time at any point in the academic year.
You must make any requests for leave of absence in advance and you must be the parent the child normally lives with.
Government rules mean that head teachers are no longer able to authorise any requests for children to be taken out of school. The law says that requests for leave can only be granted in exceptional circumstances.
A penalty notice is an alternative to you being taken to court by the council. If your child has 10 or more sessions of unauthorised absence, the school will inform our Education Welfare Service who will issue a penalty notice for each child to each parent. Anyone who has day to day care of a child is considered a ‘parent’ and legally responsible for making sure the child attends school.
The penalty is £120 per child per parent it paid within 28 days, the is reduced to £60 per child per parent if paid within the first 21 days.
If you do not pay the fine within 28 days the local authority has no option but to prosecute you in the Magistrates’ Court. This could lead to a fine of up to £1000 per parent per child.
For more about the detailed regulations, procedures and legislation governing penalty notices, please see Wiltshire Council Website.
For the Attendance Policy go to the Policies section of the website.