Ferryhill Station, Ferryhill, County Durham DL17 0DB
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Attendance and holiday requestsCHILDREN WHO ATTEND SCHOOL MOST REGULARLY TEND TO MAKE THE BEST PROGRESS.The school defends the fact that parents should know when their children are fit for school. Additionally, the school defends the right for all to spend time on holiday as a family (we acknowledge that this may be cheaper during term time). However, the school takes seriously its responsibility (in law) to monitor every child's attendance, to promote the best attendance and to challenge parents where there are concerns; the school is held accountable for this.The local authority has defined its role in monitoring attendance placing increased responsibility directly with schools. Where concerns about attendance cannot be resolved by the school, referrals may be made by the school to the local authority. Fixed penalty notices and warning letters are used to address unauthorised absences and/or patterns of absence for which reasons are not valid. The school monitors the attendance of all pupils and reports this directly to parents every half-term. It is written into law that schools may not grant any leave during term-time except where there are exceptional circumstances: this is quite rare. An Application for Leave of Absence During Term Time can be downloaded here. All Head Teachers in the Ferryhill/Chilton cluster are committed to reinforcing the local authority's protocol for unauthorised absences. Any unauthorised absences of 7 school days or more in any rolling 12 weeks are subject to a Fixed Penalty Notice from the local authority. Unauthorised absences of less than 7 school days may be subject to a Warning Notice. You must complete a 'Holiday Request Form' (downloadable below) in plenty of time before the absence. You will receive a reply from the Head Teacher outlining whether the absence has been authorised or not. Further information may also be found by clicking here. Additionally, any pupil who misses 10 sessions of school over a rolling 12 week period will be subject to action.PLEASE NOTE:- Pupils whose attendance drops below 90% are considered to be persistent absentees.Please contact Mr. Jackson if you have any queries about your child's attendance.
Where pupils are late into school, they generally miss the start of the same lesson. For Infants pupils, the first lesson is Phonics which is an essential lesson for the early development of reading skills. For Junior pupils, the first lesson is generally around spelling, grammar and punctuation (SPAG) the building blocks for high quality writing. The whole class is often disrupted when a child arrives late because the teacher must repeat the beginning of the lesson and this can delay other children’s learning. Where pupils fall below our high standards, the school must take action to improve the child’s record.
The school has reviewed its procedures for dealing with lateness. The aim of this change is to ensure that no pupil is disadvantaged through lateness and to reduce the incidence of lateness to below 25% i.e. no more than one late per month. It is expected that the school will ultimately reduce this incidence to ‘near 0%’ within the next few years. The school notes that the vast majority of families do not incur late marks because they value their child’s education, have clear routines for being on-time and/or send their children to Breakfast Club to ensure that they have a smooth start to the day. The school expects the same standards of punctuality of its staff to apply to children and their families.
From January 2018, the school’s procedures will be amended as follows:
- School expects a parent to accompany any ‘late’ pupil to the Main Office where they must sign a ‘late’ register. They will be handed a ‘lateness’ letter.
- Parents of any child whose late record rises above 25% within a rolling 12 week period will be sent a ‘Lateness’ letter 1. Where punctuality remains above 25% over the following 4 weeks, a further ‘Lateness’ letter 2 will be sent home requesting a meeting in school. Parents will be offered support. Where support is not accepted and/or punctuality remains a problem, the parents will be referred to the local authority.