Attendance & Punctuality Expectations
At St Wilfrids Academy we believe that good attendance and punctuality are fundamental to academic success now, and for the future world of work. It is important that we work closely with parents and carers, to ensure absenteeism and lateness is kept to a minimum.
All Students are expected to arrive on time at the Academy, ready for lessons. Students should arrive by 8.30 am in order for them to be punctual to their form session which begins at 8.45am. Any student who arrives in after 8.45 am will need to sign in at student reception and will be marked as late and will receive a late detention.
What is good attendance?
Attendance percentages are not like examination results: an attendance percentage needs to be in the high nineties before it can be considered good. Consider the following examples:-
- An attendance record of 90% might seem good but is equal to 1 day missed per fortnight. If this continues from Years 7 to 11, a total of six month’s education will be lost.
- An attendance record of 80% might seem acceptable but is equal to 1 day missed per week. If this continues from Years 7 to 11, a total of one year’s education will be lost.
Why is good attendance important?
Good attendance at school is vital for pupils to achieve their full educational potential. Pupils with good attendance records benefit in the following ways:-
- Continuity of learning which makes progress and retention easier
- Improved performance in coursework tasks
- Enhanced performance in examinations
- Continuity of relationships and friendships
- Good references for further education or employment
- Good habits are formed for later life
What can parents do to support their child to achieve good attendance levels?
Parents play a very important role in ensuring the good attendance records of their children. Below is a list of suggested strategies:-
- Encourage full attendance.
- Stress the importance of full attendance to your child.
- Do not allow your child to have time off for minor complaints or illnesses: if they are well enough to be up and about they are generally well enough to attend the academy.
- Monitor your child’s attendance.
- Take any vacations in academy holidays, not during term time.
- Try to book any medical or dental appointments out of academy hours or make them towards the very end of the academy day. Please note the academy will not authorise all day absence for medical appointments.
- Ensure your child is punctual; students should be in the academy before 8.30 am, in order to be ready to start learning in their first lesson which begins at 8.45 am.
If your child is unable to attend the Academy, please telephone 01302 562540 and choose option 1 and leave a message on our answer machine, contact your child’s Personal Learning Advocate or you can use the SchoolComms text messaging service with the reason your child is unable to attend the Academy. Please confirm your child’s name, year group and the reason for the absence. Parents are expected to contact the academy every day their child is absent from the academy.
Only the academy can authorise an absence. An explanation given by a parent is not, necessarily, sufficient for the academy to authorise an absence.
According to guidelines to schools from the Department for Education, an absence may only be authorised if the absence is due to:-
- Pupil illness, though we may require medical evidence to support such an absence.
- “Leave” given by the academy (this commonly includes medical appointments, interviews, and other similar special circumstances) However medical appointment should be made out of academy hours whenever possible. Please note the academy will not authorise an all day absence for medical appointments. Evidence of medical appointments/Interviews will need to be supplied to the academy.
- The pupil being unable to attend due to unavoidable causes – authorised at the discretion of the academy.
- Religious observance where applicable.
Absences which the academy is not able to authorise include:-
- Looking after a relative, pet etc.
- A shopping trip, even if this is for uniform.
- Day trips.
- Lateness after the register has closed.
- Being unable to participate in an academy activity e.g. Games or a school trip.
- Remaining at home to wait for deliveries, repairmen etc.
What can I do if my child starts missing school?
Children can show their worries and concerns in a number of different ways e.g. a reluctance to go to school, feigning illness, failure to attend school even though the child is sent, missing lessons whilst in school. If a problem seems to be emerging parents should:-
- Talk to the child to try to ascertain if there are any problems or worries at the academy, on the journey to or from the academy or at home.
- Contact the academy as soon as possible- Mrs Wilkinson our Attendance Manager can be contacted throughout the academy day on 01302 562540, her mobile 07944 449658 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org She will be happy to help you and your child with any concerns you may have around attendance.