Attendance above 95%
We believe that the infant years are an important time when the foundations for learning are made and good attendance is therefore extremely important. Research shows that children with high attendance at infant school:
- benefit more greatly from their education;
- achieve better results at the end of Key Stage One; and
- are more likely to achieve well at junior and secondary school.
The impact of 10 days of absence
While 95% may appear to be a high level of attendance, research also shows that once attendance drops below 95% progress may suffer and achievement will be lower.
If your child has 10 days of absence during the year, his or her attendance for the school year will be only 94.7% and therefore at the level where there is likely to be an impact on learning.
If your child had 10 days of absence every year over the 7 years spent at infant and junior school, it would be equivalent to him or her missing an entire term in school!
Clearly there will be occasions when a child is unable to attend school e.g. due to illness. However, we ask that all other absences are kept to a minimum and avoided if at all possible.
To support you in monitoring your child’s attendance throughout the year, we will send you an attendance report in December, March and with your child’s end of year report in July.
In law, parents/carers are committing an offence if they fail to ensure the regular and punctual attendance of their child at the school at which the child is registered, unless the absence has been authorised by the school. Only schools have the power to authorise or grant a leave of absence.
Medical and dental appointments
In order to minimise disruption to your child’s learning medical or dental appointments should be made outside the school day. When an appointment has to be made during school hours, please inform the school office.
Leave of absence requests
Occasionally families may request leave for other reasons such as religious observances, participation in a public performance/examination, the death of a close member of the child’s family or a holiday. Schools are only able to authorise absence from school in exceptional circumstances. In making a request for an authorised absence from school you will need to explain why the circumstances are exceptional. To request leave of absence, please complete and return a ‘Request to authorise absence from school due to exceptional circumstances’ form. This form is also available from the school office. Where the request is related to a holiday, the form should be submitted to the school at least fourteen days before the proposed first day of absence and before a booking is made. Please note there is no general right to authorise absence for a family holiday. If you take your child out of school without permission the absence will be unauthorised and we will consider legal action.
End of Key Stage One assessment – Year 2 children
Please be aware that we are very unlikely to be able to authorise leave for Year 2 children during the End of Key Stage One assessment period as the children will be taking part in assessment activities which enable us to moderate our judgments with those of other schools:
The assessment period is from 6th to 20th May 2016.
Please be aware that we are unlikely to be able to authorise leave for Year 1 children during the week commencing 13th June 2016 as the children will be taking part in the statutory phonics assessment. The DfE also requires that any Year 2 child, who did not achieve 32/40 or more in the phonics assessment made at the end of Year 1 in 2014/15 is re-assessed during the week commencing 13th June. We are also unable to authorise any leave for these children during this time.
Parents/carers who take their child out of school without the absence being agreed and authorised by the school can be issued a penalty notice. Please see the Hampshire Country Council leaflet ‘Information on Penalty Notices for non-attendance at school’ for more information.