Heolddu Comprehensive

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Absence

Every child or young person is entitled to an education. Parents who do not ensure their pupils receive an appropriate education put their whole future at risk. Being absent from school means a lost learning opportunity. Regular attendance including punctuality helps a child become reliable and organised - two qualities valued by employers and essential for life after education. As a school we are committed to: Maintaining parents’ and pupils’ awareness of the importance of regular attendance;
  • Raising attendance
  • Improving punctuality
  • Raising levels of achievement
  • Maximising opportunities both in the school and in later life

Good attendance is important because:

  • Statistics show a direct link between under-achievement and poor attendance
  • Regular attenders make better progress, both socially and academically
  • Regular attenders find school routines and school work easier to cope with
  • Regular attenders find learning more satisfying
  • Regular attenders have an easier transfer to secondary school
  • Regular attendance promotes wellbeing

Parents must:

Phone/e-mail the school on the first morning of all absences with the reason for the absence and inform us when the child will return – before 8:30am or as early as possible. Arrange dental and doctor’s appointments out of school hours or during school holidays. Bring their child to school before and returning them after a hospital or other medical appointment; keep the school updated by telephone or e-mail if their child has an extended period of absence due to illness. Work with the school to promote good attendance.

The school will take various measures in order to safeguard children by following up unexplained absences after registration:

  • In touch e-mail communication to parents/guardians contact e-mail address
  • With a phone call as a follow if the absence continues
  • With a follow up home visit if we fail to make contact on the first day/s of absence
  • Referral to Education Welfare Service for support
  • SAMS – Student attendance meeting on school site with all multi-agency partners required

Scheduling attendance panel meetings (SAMs) with the Family Engagement Officer to discuss attendance and to set targets for improvement. Making a referral (for persistent absence), to the Education Welfare Officer, who works with the school to review and support attendance matters.

Punctuality

The school day starts at 8:30am and all pupils should be on site by 8:25am. It is important to be on time as the first few minutes of the school day are often used to give out instructions or organise schoolwork for the rest of the day. If a child misses the pastoral period, their work for the whole day may be affected. Late arrivals are disruptive to the whole class and often embarrassing for a child. We expect our students to be punctual. Arrival after the close of registration may be marked as an unauthorised absence in line with the Local Authority guidance. The school will contact parents if we have concerns about a child’s punctuality. Persistent lateness will result in a school detention.

Holidays and Term Time

The school supports the view that every lesson counts and discourages parents from taking holidays in term time. There is no entitlement to time off in term time. It is our policy not to authorise any holidays in term time.