Sickness and Absence
Procedures for dealing with Absence and Lateness
On the first day of absence parents must inform the school of the reason for their child’s absence by calling the office on 01325 267 222 (The Office is open daily from 8.15am to receive telephone calls). This reason is recorded in the absence book and on SIMS.
If no message is received, our Parent Support Adviser (PSA) or School Receptionist will telephone the parents/carers of all unexplained absentees from 9.15am onwards and record explanations in the absence book and on SIMS. The admin team will send a text message to the parent/carer if contact cannot be made by telephone.
If no response is forthcoming this should be recorded in the absence book and on SIMS. The late book will be used to record the names of all children who are late and who must report to the school office. Trends in absences are scrutinised by key personnel in school.
We ask you to contact the school daily if your child will be absent for more than one day. Your child’s safety is at the heart of all decisions made, and this ensures that we know where your child is if they are not at school. Please do not be offended if the school contacts you.
Requests for Leave of Absence
Parents must complete a ‘request for leave of absence in term time’ form.
We do understand that there are really exceptional circumstances under which a parent may legitimately request leave of absence. At our school, exceptional circumstances are truly exceptional and would only be a specific one-off event.
From September 2013, parents no longer have the right to request leave of absence for their children for an annual holiday. Head Teachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. We recognise that the employment of parents/carers can impact on choices regarding holidays; if holidays are dictated by the employer (eg. for armed forces or emergency services personnel), rather than just availability of holidays as part of an employer’s rota, this will be considered. Written proof from the employer will be required; this could include the Holiday Allocation Policy and dates allocated for the year in question.
If there are exceptional circumstances ‘Head Teachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.’
Each request will be judged on its own merit and may be discussed with the Attendance Link Governor. We use the following guidelines to decide whether such requests for absence will be granted:
Permission will not be given to children in Year 2 or Year 6 preparing for SATs.
Permission will not be given to children if they will be absent for SATs or other standardised tests, including the Y1 Phonic Screening Check. School will provide information well in advance as dates become available.
Permission will not be given in September.
Permission will not be given for children who have poor attendance and/or punctuality records. (Usually attendance less than 96% in the current and previous year would be considered unsatisfactory in this respect).
Long term/Holiday absence taken without approval will be recorded as unauthorised and a referral will be made to the Local Authority who will then decide, in conjunction with the Head Teacher, on appropriate action to take. This will be either a formal warning or the issue of a Penalty Notice. A Penalty Notice is a fine of £60 issued to each parent if paid between 1-21 days after issue, increasing to £120 if paid between 21-28 days. If payment is not received within 28 days you may be prosecuted for the offence of non-school attendance under Section 444 (1A) Education Act 1996 and could be fined up to £2500 and/or receive a prison sentence of up to three months.
Note: the school does not issue or administer Penalty Notices and once issued has no powers over their enforcement.