Attendance Matters

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The importance of School Attendance

We would like to remind you about the importance of good attendance and punctuality, which as a school we take very seriously.  Days off school soon add up and missing lessons makes it hard to avoid gaps in learning, resulting in students having to work harder when they come back to catch up and missing vital information that will prevent their progress.  There are 175 non-schools days a year for holidays, cultural experiences and family time.  It may be useful for you to know what attendance figures mean for your child:

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Reporting an absence

All absences must be reported by 9am each day, using our dedicated attendance line 01204 201144. If you know your child is going to be absent, please let us know in advance. Written notification, giving the details of all absences must be given to the pastoral team on your child's return to school.  If your child has been absent due to a medical appointment, please attach the appointment card/hospital letter.Unexplained absences will be unauthorised by the school.Absences of 4 or more days must be supported by medical evidence.  The aim is to prepare students for progression to Key Stage 4, further education or employment.  Absence of 4 or more days without supporting medical evidence will not be authorised.Holidays during term time will not be authorised but you do need to notify us of the absence.Any form of unauthorised absence may be subject to a Penalty Notice from the Local Authority.

Punctuality

Arriving late to school and into lessons is very disruptive for the teacher and other class members.  It also means that late student miss important information from teacher.  If for whatever reason you know your child will be arriving late, please call the school or provide your child with a note.  Late students must sign in at the office.

The Law states that you are responsible for:

Ensuring your children receive full time educationTheir regular and punctual attendance at school

As the parent you are committing an offence if you fail to make sure that your child attends school regularly and absence is unauthorised even if they are missing school without your knowledge.

If you fail to ensure your child's regular and punctual attendance at school the Local Authority may issue a penalty notice or instigate legal proceedings for an offence under section 444 of the Education Act 1996.

Examples of authorised absence

Hospital or Orthodontic appointment (evidence required).College/Employment interview (evidence required).Reported illness of up to 3 days (unless medical evidence has been requested).Illness of 4 or more days with medical evidence.Emergency doctor or dental appointments (evidence required).  Routine appointments should be made outside school hours.Approved supervised sporting activity (evidence required).

Examples of unauthorised absence

Leave of absence not approved by school.Absence not reported on the day or unsupported by written explanations upon return to school.Absence of 4 or more days without medical evidenceArriving late after registers have closedTruancy

Please help your child to maintain good attendance by booking doctor, dentist and optician appointments either in the school holidays, in the afternoon after school or at weekends.

Please provide school with an appointment card/letter if your child needs to leave school for an appointment.

If your child feels unwell in school they must see their Head of Year, who will contact you should your child need to go home.

Requests for absence during term time

The law does not grant parents an automatic right to take their child out of school during term time.  Any absence from school will disrupt your child's learning.  You may consider that a holiday will be educational but your child will miss out on the teaching that their classmates will receive during your holiday.  Attendance is vital to academic success and lost education poses a potential risk of under achievement.   This is something we all have a responsibility to avoid.  If you consider your request for absence to be an exceptional circumstance then please put your request in writing to Mrs. Lucas and a meeting will be arrange to discuss your request.

Thank you for your support in ensuring excellent attendance and attainment at Bolton St Catherine's Academy.

Yours Sincerely

Jason Whittaker

Deputy Headteacher