Every child has the right to receive a full time education.
"The law entitles every child of compulsory school age to an efficient, full-time education suitable to their age, aptitude, and any special educational need they may have. It is the legal responsibility of every parent to make sure their child receives that education either by attendance at a school or by education otherwise than at a school.. Where parents decide to have their child registered at school, they have an additional legal duty to ensure their child attends that school regularly. This means their child must attend every day that the school is open, except in a small number of allowable circumstances such as being too ill to attend or being given permission for an absence in advance from the school."
Working together to improve school attendance, DfE 2022
Attendance expectations at Kingsbrook View Primary Academy
We want all our pupils to have excellent attendance so they can benefit from the teaching, curriculum, wider experiences and social opportunities that we are providing.
We are acutely aware of the DfE statistics that demonstrate that pupils who achieve well at school are noted to have higher levels of attendance than those who do not. We want all KVPA pupils to achieve to the best of their ability.
We are also aware that excellent attendance is a protective factor for pupils who are vulnerable.
We therefore expect parents to support regular attendance at our Academy for their child, except in exceptional circumstances, such as illness, which means they are unable to safely attend school and medical appointments that cannot be scheduled outside of school time.
95% attendance or below is a cause for concern.
90% or below is considered to be persistent absenteeism.
EVERY DAY COUNTS!When a child is too unwell for school
There is some guidance here from the NHS which clearly outlines when children should be kept off school for particular conditions: NHS Guidance
The most common illnesses that you may want information on are listed below:
- Vomiting or diarrhoea- your child must stay at home until 48 hours have passed since the last incident.
- Chicken pox- your child must stay at home until the spots have started to scab over.
- Headlice- children can be in school but should be treated as soon as possible.
- Covid- three days' absence is recommended by the NHS.
- Conjunctivitis- children can be in school but should be treated as soon as possible
Attendance for children with Medical Conditions or Disabilities
We understand that some children will have lower attendance rates due to medical conditions (including mental health) or disabilities that require regular treatment or medical appointments and that some of these children will also have more days when they are too unwell to attend school. We endeavour to work closely with these families to support regular attendance and get the best outcomes for the child, providing any reasonable adjustments that may be needed. In cases where parents are telling us that low attendance is related to a medical need, we will contact the GP practice for confirmation.
What does our academy do?
- We provide 190 days of planned curriculum delivery – not a day should be missed
- We monitor attendance regularly
- We work with parents and families where attendance is becoming a concern
- We report levels of academy attendance to Academy Trustees and educational bodies such as the DfE and the Local Authority
- We aim to achieve an attendance target of at least 97%, which is above the national average attendance in primary Schools
- We refuse term-time holidays
What can you do to help and support your child?
- Report the absence of your child as early as possible on the first day of absence
- Ensure that your child is in for registration – so they don’t miss out on the first part of the day
- Do not take holidays during term time
- Understand that the beginnings and ends of terms in the academy are as important as any other time
- Do not allow your child time away from the academy unless it is absolutely necessary
- Encourage a pattern of punctuality and good attendance with your child – let them see that it matters. This sets them up for their future
- When one of your children is off make sure that you get the others into the academy
- Take notice of how much time your child has been away from the academy
- Let us know if you are about to leave the area, change your address or any of your contact numbers. Ensure that we always have up-to-date contact information.
- Arrange dentist and routine appointments out of academy hours
What can we do to help and support you?
We communicate individual attendance figures at Parents' Evenings and on your child's annual report. We phone and write to parents if we feel that absence is causing a concern or for persistent absence. Relationships with parents are very important to our Academy and the success of the children, and we will in the first instance try to work with parents where a pattern of poor attendance is emerging. This is in order to see if there are any barriers to attendance that we may be able to support with.
We work closely with Buckinghamshire Council on improving the attendance of pupils. Where a pupil has been identified as having persistent absence, we follow the Buckinghamshire guidance (see flow chart below).
Talk to us! We are here to help. Please view our attendance policy, at the bottom of this page, for further information.
Punctuality - what if your child is late?
- They might feel self-conscious
- They miss crucial learning at the beginning of the lesson
- They miss the social part of the beginning of the day
- They may be reluctant or refuse to enter the classroom
- It causes disruption for all other class members
Term time holidays
The DfE are very clear that term-time holidays are not an acceptable reason for a child to be out of school. Their guidance states:
"You have to get permission from the head teacher if you want to take your child out of school during term time.
You can only do this if:
- you make an application to the head teacher in advance (as a parent the child normally lives with)
- there are exceptional circumstances
It’s up to the head teacher how many days your child can be away from school if leave is granted."
Requesting absence in term time
In line with this guidance, any requests for absence must be submitted prior to the planned absence using a form which can be collected from the academy office. It is extremely rare that any request for a term time holiday will be authorised by the Head of Academy. While we appreciate that holiday costs rise significantly during school breaks (as this is something that also affects our staff), this will not lead to an authorised request.
Fines for absence in term time
KVPA works with Buckinghamshire Council on term-time absence and refer unauthorised absences of more than 5 days for a fine. The fine is £60.
Please be aware that if the fine is applied, it is per parent, per child. So for a family of 4 with two parents and two children a total fine of £240 would be applied.
Where there are extenuating circumstances, such as a death or a medical emergency, the Council may stop the fine if they receive relevant evidence. Such evidence must go to the Buckinghamshire Council, rather than the academy, though we can forward it on to them on your behalf, should you wish.
The fines are applied and received by the Council and the money does not come to the Academy.