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Persistent Absentee and Fixed Penality information|
St Peter’s School attendance policy clearly explains the use of fixed penalty notices.
Particular attention should be given to the changes regarding Fixed Penalty Notices. The thresholds are 10 sessions (5 days) of unauthorised absence in any term or 20 sessions (10 days) over 2 consecutive terms, which could cover 2 academic years. This means that families could receive up to 3 fixed penalty notices in any academic year.
The current persistent absence threshold, of around 15 per cent, means a pupil has to be absent for 56 sessions (28 days) of school to be classified as persistently absent. This is a great deal of schooling to miss and, in the government’s opinion, setting the bar too high in this respect. From the beginning of this academic year, 2015 to 2016, the government is reducing the persistent absence threshold from 15 per cent to 10 per cent.
Currently persistently absent pupils are defined according to the absent sessions threshold – currently 56 or more sessions of absence for the full academic year.
The following table shows estimated cumulative absence sessions thresholds for 10 per cent.
Leave of Absence Request Reminder|
Headteachers cannot authorise any leave of absence during term time unless they are satisfied that there are exceptional circumstances to warrant the granting of leave. Holidays, visiting relatives in this country or abroad, caring for sick relatives and birthdays are some examples that are not regarded as exceptional circumstances.
If your child is ill parents must provide a specific reason for illness when telephoning school. For example saying a child is “unwell” will not receive an authorised absence mark.
Many thanks to all the parents who ensure that their children attend school regularly, and on time. Regular and punctual attendance has proven to have a very positive effect on a child’s education and emotional wellbeing.
First Day Response|
If your child is off school for any reason, it is very important that you ring us to let us know before 9.00am; there is usually someone in school from 8:00am each morning. The reason for this is that we need to ensure the safety of all children who attend the school.
If your child is not in school by 9:30am and we do not know why, a member of staff will phone you to find out why.
We would like you to provide School with a current contact number and if possible the phone number of a relative or friend who we could phone. If your contact details change in anyway we ask that you tell us immediately so that we can amend our records and are able to contact you if needed.
So please, for safety’s sake……
RING SCHOOL ON (01282 426873) BEFORE 9.00 IF YOUR CHILD IS UNABLE TO ATTEND SCHOOL
Reducing Illness Days|
When a child has a day off we must be notified by a parent or carer as to why. This can be a note or a telephone call. A child returning to school after an absence will be marked as unauthorised absence until we receive a valid explanation.
Every half-day absence from school has to be classified by the school as either AUTHORISED or UNAUTHORISED. This is why information about the cause of any absence is always required.
Authorised absences are mornings or afternoons away from school for a good reason like illness (where a child is too ill to attend school) medical/dental appointments which unavoidably fall in school time, emergencies or other unavoidable cause. The Department for Education guidance states "If the authenticity of illness is in doubt, schools can request parents to provide medical evidence to support illness. Schools can record the absence as unauthorised if not satisfied of the authenticity of the illness but should advise parents of their intention. Medical evidence can take the form of prescriptions, appointment cards, etc. rather than doctors’ notes."
Unauthorised absences are those which the school does not consider reasonable and for which no 'leave' has been given. This type of absence can lead to the Authority using sanctions and/or legal proceedings.