MERIDIAN ANGEL PRIMARY SCHOOL
What you need to know about your child’s attendance at school – Guidance for parents, carers and pupils
What to do when your child is absent from school
Let us know!
• Telephone the school office, phone number 02037733895 on the first day of absence to explain the reason why your child is away from school
• If your child is absent for more than one day, please keep the school informed during your child’s absence
• If your child has a medical or dental appointment please try to make them out of school hours or at the end of the school day whenever possible. If they are in school hours, please bring in their appointment card or letter so we can put a copy in their file
When will absences not be authorised?
The school will not authorise absence for any of the following reasons: holidays, shopping, looking after other members of the family, minding the house, birthdays or visiting relations that are ill abroad.
Arriving at school after 9.05am is recorded as unauthorised absence on our records. We monitor pupils’ who arrive late for school and work with parents and carers to improve punctuality.
Why good attendance is important
At our school, the staff and pupils all know how important good attendance is for children’s well-being and progress. In recent years much research has been carried out on the effect that poor attendance can have on children’s progress at school and how well they achieve in life. For example, 90% attendance might sound quite good but what it really means is…
• Your child is absent for lessons for the equivalent of one half day every week
• In one year, 4 whole weeks of lessons are missed
• If your child continues to attend for only 90% of the time, in 5 years, he, or she, will miss half of the school year.
Your child will be classed as persistently absent when their attendance falls under 90%. This can happen without you realising. For example, if you miss 7 sessions (3 ½ days) in the first half term your child will fall into this category.
Children who do not attend school regularly often have the following problems:
• They are not able to keep up with their work
• It is difficult, in a busy school day, for teachers to find the time to help your child catch up
• Children who arrive late miss important parts of the lesson and disrupt the learning of other children in the class
This is why Meridian Angel Primary School is making good attendance a top priority. By improving our attendance rates, we will improve the standards that our children achieve and provide them with better chances in life. We can only do this with your full support.
How parents and carers can help:
• Work together with us
• Send your child to school every day, on time, unless they are genuinely ill please refer to our “Send To School Or Keep At Home” booklet that will help you make this decision
• Avoid taking your child out of school for holidays
• Make sure that all appointments are made outside of school hours whenever possible. If this is not possible, please make appointments at the end of the school day.
Family holidays during term time:
• The Head teacher does not authorise absence for family holidays during the school term
• Parents and carers who choose to take their child out of school for holidays should be aware that such absence will be recorded as ‘unauthorised’ on the child’s record and penalty notices will be issued.
What will happen if my child is often absent from school?
• The school monitors the attendance of all children
• If your child’s attendance falls below 95%, we will monitor it and contact you by letter to address any concerns.
• If absence continues, you will be invited to discuss the reasons for your child’s absence. The Educational Welfare Officer will be invited to attend.
• If necessary, a referral will be made to the Education Welfare Service and the absences investigated further.
What happens when my child is ill?
• There may be times when your child has to miss school because he, or she, is ill
• You should always contact the school on the first day of absence to
let the us know that your child is unwell
It is important to let the school know if your child has ongoing health problems so that the right support can be put in place.
To encourage good attendance, every week, we present an attendance cup to the class who has the best attendance and one for the class who have been most punctual. Every term there is a prize of an all-expenses paid school trip, for the class with the best attendance and punctuality.
Certificates are awarded at the end of each term to children who have 100% attendance and punctuality.