It is important to establish regular and prompt attendance at school. We value parents and children’s efforts to attend school on time and regularly. Of course it is important that when children are not well that they are properly cared for. Please do let the school know when your child is absent due to sickness or for any other reason. Holidays will not be authorized in term time. Absence for leave will only be granted in exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the Headteacher. Children’s attendance should reach at least 96% in any academic year.
Absence from School
If a child is away from school please inform the school by telephone on the first day of absence and keep the school informed if the absence is longer than two days. On return to school a letter confirming the reason for the absence should be handed in to your child’s class teacher.
- Absence due to illness, medical or dental treatment (please provide evidence of appointment).
- Absence due to educational visits, school trips, etc.
- All other absences are unauthorized:
- Lateness is unauthorized absence unless this is due to illness or medical appointments. Please provide the school with a written and dated letter explaining the absence.
Children arriving at or leaving school during school hours:
If your child arrives at school after the start of the school day or has to leave before the end of the school day for any reason, could you please come to the school office. The secretary will then collect/deliver your child from/to their classroom and record their presence/absence in the class register. All children taken out or returned in school time must be signed in or out at the office. Parents should not collect children from classes – this is done by a member of school staff.
Attendance and the attendance process.
St Catherine’s School & Kindergarten are committed to ensuring the best for all our learners and are working together with parents and carers to support children and families. All schools are working hard to promote good attendance and have common systems in place to work with families when attendance drops below an acceptable level.
You will be aware of the importance of good school attendance in improving a young person’s chance of success in life and establishing positive attitudes to life-long learning. There is clear evidence of the link between poor attendance at school and low levels of achievement. Of pupils who have less than 90% attendance, only 35% achieve five or more GCSEs at A * to C including Maths and English, but 73% of pupils who have attendance of 95% or more will achieve this.
If a child has an attendance level of 90% they will have missed one day a fortnight in school. Over a school year this will represent four weeks of absence. If this level of absence were maintained for a five year period it would mean half a school year would have been missed.
If St Catherine’s School & Kindergarten school is concerned about a child's attendance they will talk to the parents and write to them to explain their concerns. The school will then monitor the child's attendance expecting to see an improvement. The Dorset County Council (DCC) School Attendance Service will be made aware of the school's concerns. If no improvement is made, the family will be invited to attend an Attendance Meeting.
Here at St Catherine’s School & Kindergarten we are determined to ensure that all our students have the opportunity to achieve success and have an excellent record of attendance. Where there is cause for concern you will be contacted and attendance closely monitored. If attendance does not improve sufficiently, usually at least (96%), you will be invited to an Attendance Meeting. This meeting is an opportunity for the school, family and a representative from DCC’s School Attendance Service to meet together to discuss why your child has such a high absence rate and seek solutions to any problems.
The Meeting can recommend several outcomes, which can include; a further period of close monitoring with specified targets for attendance; issuing a £60 Penalty Notice, a Parenting Order or seeking prosecution which could result in a fine of up to £2,500.
The attendance process is designed to identify poor attendees quickly and address the issues that are affecting their attendance. When attendance improves, monitoring will continue and, if it falls, the Attendance Process will be resumed.
We hope that the Attendance Meeting will not be needed and that all pupils will have a good record of attendance, are happy and successful and benefit from their time here at St Catherine’s.
Please download and complete the request form and return to the school office either in an envelope addressed to Mrs Sparks or via email marked for the attention of Mrs Sparks to firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you.
Applications for leave of absence must be made in advance. Any parent/carer requesting leave of absence of 5 or more days will be asked to make an appointment to see the Headteacher to explain the circumstances.
Please Note: The amendments (2013) to The Education Regulations (2006) make clear that Headteachers may not grant leave of absence during term time unless in ‘exceptional circumstances’. Family holidays are not considered ‘exceptional circumstances’.