Paying Attention to Attendance

ProgramRegistration clipartEach year, within annual reports home, parents receive feedback on their child's annual attendance in the form of a percentage, guidance as to what the percentage equates to in real terms, and the number of unauthorised absences. Feedback received from parents highlighted that the school could be doing more to inform parents throughout the year, particularly if percentages dip.

In response, we will be feeding back mid-year attendance at parent consultations on 17th and 18th March. We have also worked with the school's Education Welfare Officer (EWO) to identify those children with attendance at risk i.e. 90% and below. This equates to those who are missing, on average, at least half a day of schooling per week - the impact on a child's education is therefore likely to be significant if this rate persists.

In addition, we have also monitored those children with persistent late attendance of school (10+ lates since September). In previous newsletters we have highlighted the impact that this has on children's education:

  • missing parts of/whole lessons
  • disruption affecting the child
  • disruption affecting the rest of the class

A child who misses 10 minutes a day of school will miss 30 hours of lessons over the course of a year!

Clearly, it is in both parents' and school's interest to minimise late attendance and avoidable absence from school. The school's EWO will be sending letters to families to notify them where either rate has reached the aforementioned levels. This is NOT a warning to parents but a helpful reminder to make them aware of their child's current attendance rates. It is for information only.

We are sympathetic to the fact that children may have genuine reasons for lower attendance rates (illness, compassionate circumstances etc) so parents should, as the school does, take this into account when considering any attendance data for a pupil.

We hope that the reminders are useful for parents. They will be sent out within the next 2 weeks.