Crown Wood Primary

Crown Wood
Primary School

Attendance & Leave of Absence

Download a PDF version of our current Attendance Policy

Download a Leave of Absence Request Form

 

Introduction

At Crown Wood Primary School we firmly believe that all pupils benefit from outstanding school attendance.  To this end, we will do all we can to ensure that our pupils achieve maximum possible attendance and that any problems that prevent full attendance are identified and acted upon promptly.  In order for a pupil’s attendance record to be deemed very good, it must be 97% or above: 

100%

 

Outstanding Attendance

97%–99%

 

Exemplary / Very Good Attendance

95%-97% 

 

Expected / Good Attendance

 <94%

 

Attendance Requires Improvement

 
Aims and Objectives

Crown Wood Primary School will maintain systems and practices that will: 

  • Create an ethos in which excellent attendance is the norm.
  • Maintain a safe, secure environment where pupils feel valued and welcome, thereby positively encouraging attendance. 
  • Raise pupil awareness of the importance of punctuality and uninterrupted attendance, and encourage in pupils a sense of responsibility.
  • Celebrate excellent school attendance.
  • Support pupils and families who experience difficulties maintaining good school attendance.

 
Expectations

We expect that all pupils will: 

  • Attend school regularly. 
  • Attend school punctually. 
  • Attend school appropriately prepared for the day. 

 We expect that all parents/carers who have day to day responsibility for the children and young people will: 

  • Encourage regular school attendance and be aware of their legal responsibilities.
  • Ensure that the child/children in their care arrive at school punctually, prepared for the school day.
  • Contact the school before 10.00am on the morning of each day of the pupil’s absence by calling 01344 485448, option 1 or email the school at secretary@crownwoodprimary.co.uk

Parents/carers are encouraged to contact the school promptly whenever any problem occurs that may keep the child away from school.

Any unexplained absence is treated as unauthorised absence.
 

Crown Wood Primary School has a responsibility to ensure that all teachers:

  • Complete registers accurately and punctually during every registration period and lesson. 
  • Assist the job title in following up any unexplained absences upon the pupil’s return to school. 
  • Inform the Safeguarding Team and / or Pastoral Support Advisor of concerns. 
  • Are alert to early indicators that could culminate in non-attendance and to report these concerns as soon as possible to the Pastoral Support Advisor.

All Greenshaw Learning Trust Schools act in accordance with the Education Act 1996 and work collaboratively with local authorities to support parents in ensuring that their children are regularly attending school.
 

The legal framework

Under the provision of the Education Act 1996 (s434) and the Student Registration Regulations 1995 the school must keep an attendance register. Under Section 7 of the Education Act 1996, parents are responsible for making sure that their children of compulsory school age receive full-time education. Parents have a legal responsibility to ensure their child’s regular attendance at the school where they are registered. If a child of compulsory school age who is registered at a school fails to attend regularly at the school then the parent is guilty of an offence under Section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996; which may lead to prosecution. Since March 2001 there has been a further offence where a parent, knowing that their child is failing to attend regularly at school, fails without reasonable justification to cause him/her to attend (Education Act 1996, section 444(1A) as amended by the Criminal Justice and Court Service Act 2000). In February 2004, section 23 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Act gave powers to designated bodies to issue Penalty Notices where a parent/carer is considered capable but unwilling to secure an improvement in their child’s attendance at school. Since September 2015 the Persistence Absence percentage has changed from 15% to 10%.
 

Responding to Non-Attendance 

Pupil attendance is continually monitored by the Pastoral Support Advisor.  When a pupil does not attend school, the school will respond in accordance with their Attendance and Punctuality procedures, this may include: 

  • First Day Absence calls, text messages or emails to all named contacts with parental responsibility.  
  • In the event of no response being received for the absence the school will attempt to communicate with other named contacts.
  • Written communication for unexplained absences.
  • Implementation of a staged attendance intervention.
  • Home visits.
  • Continued concerns about a child’s attendance may result in a referral to the school’s Safeguarding Team, an EHAT (Early Help Assessment Tool), the school nursing service, MASH Team (Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub) or the police for a welfare check.
  • Failure to comply with the expectations set by the Headteacher and / or Pastoral Support Advisor may result in a referral to the local authority requesting the issue of a Penalty Notice, an application for an Education Supervision Order or court prosecution. 

 

Punctuality

If a pupil arrives late to registration, they will receive a late mark in the register. Reasons for lateness may be investigated and responded to in line with the School’s Attendance and Punctuality procedures. 

Lateness after registration has closed is recorded as an unauthorised absence (U) and parents/carers will be notified of this absence.  Continued Lateness after the Close of Registration may result in a referral to the local authority requesting a penalty notice. 
 

Absences that the school is unable to authorise include:

  • Holidays during term time.
  • Arrival after the registers close at 9.30am without prior notification. 
  • Shopping trips, even if this is for school uniform. 
  • Birthday celebrations.
  • Looking after a relative/pets. 
  • Tiredness due to extra-curricular activities.
  • All unexplained absences.


Medical Appointments

Parents/carers are encouraged to arrange all non-urgent medical appointments outside of school hours but where this is not possible the school should be notified in advance by calling or emailing the office on 01344 485448 /  secretary@crownwoodprimary.co.uk. Where it is not possible to arrange appointments outside of school hours, pupils are encouraged to attend school either side of their appointment where possible.

 
Religious Holidays

The school will authorise absence for major religious holidays.  It is the responsibility of the parent/carer to inform the school in advance of their intention to keep their child at home.  If parents/carers do not inform the school any days missed may be recorded as an unauthorised absence. Requests for extended absence for religious observances should be made in writing to the Headteacher at:  secretary@crownwoodprimary.co.uk

 
Holidays

The school holiday dates are published a year in advance and it is essential that parents/carers take their family holidays during the school holidays.  It is the school's policy not to authorise absence during term time for holidays and any absence of this nature will be recorded as unauthorised. 

We recognise that there may be occasions where parents/carers feel that there are extenuating reasons for requesting leave during term time.  In such circumstances parents/carers should write to/email the Headteacher outlining the reason for the request and the dates the pupil will be absent from school.  The Headteacher will inform the parents/carers of his/her decision in writing.  

Requests for long periods of absence will not be authorised.  Prolonged unauthorised absences may put your child’s place at name of school at risk. 

If parents take their children on holiday during term time without authorisation the school will apply for a Penalty Notice to be issued in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1966 and the Education and Inspection Act 2006.  

A Penalty Notice is issued to each parent in respect of each child not attending school.  “Parents” includes partners who are not married to, but who live with, one of the parents who has main care responsibilities for the child. Other family members with parental responsibility including grandparents and siblings may also be liable for a penalty notice.
 

Penalty Notice

A Penalty Notice is an alternative to prosecution, which does not require an appearance in Court, but which seeks to improve a pupil’s attendance.  

A Penalty Notice may be issued, incurring a £60 fine, which is increased to £120 if not paid within the specified timescale. Should the notice remain unpaid the matter will be taken before the magistrate’s court.  Alternatively, if legal action were to be taken, and a parent is found guilty of failing to ensure their child’s regular attendance at school, it is possible that they could be fined up to a maximum of £2,500 and/or receive 3 months imprisonment. 

A Penalty Notice may be issued to parents/carers who are failing to secure their child's regular school attendance and are failing to engage with the Attendance Officer: 

  • Where a child is taken out of school for a holiday during term without the authority of the Headteacher, each parent is liable to receive a penalty notice for each child. 
  • Where attendance has fallen below 85% or there are no less than 10 unauthorised sessions during a sixth month period.  

With the exception of unauthorised holidays taken in term time, parents will be sent a formal warning of their liability to receive such a notice before it is issued.