Good attendance is essential to good learning. When children are absent, they miss out on learning. They may then find it difficult to catch up or make further progress because of what they have missed. If absence is frequent, this can also lead to difficulties in forming and keeping friendships.
For this reason, it is very important that children attend school regularly, and that holidays are not taken during term time. Where attendance drops below 90 per cent or is mostly unauthorised, the Education Welfare Officer may become involved in order to support the family to improve attendance. Obviously there are times when absence is unavoidable, either because of illness or due to other circumstances. In the case of illness, please telephone the school office, and keep them informed if the illness continues. Any requests for authorised absence should be put in writing; forms are available from the office.
Absence can be authorised at the discretion of the head teacher. It is very important that children are on time for school. If they are on time, they can go into class with the rest of their classmates and take part in all the routines at the beginning of the day. This helps them to settle quickly and to be ready for learning. Much important teaching and information-sharing takes place in the first half hour of the school day.
Learning to be on time is also an essential life skill! If children are late, they get unsettled and can take a long time to catch up with the learning they have missed. Some children feel very self-conscious when they are late, and this can lead to poor behaviour or to difficulties with joining in. For more detail on our approach to attendance and punctuality, including rewards and sanctions, please refer to our policy (available here).