“Pupils need to attend school regularly to benefit from their education. Missing out on lessons leaves children vulnerable to falling behind. Children with poor attendance tend to achieve less in both primary and secondary school.” School attendance: guidance for schools, DfE (2020)
The government expects us to:
- Promote good attendance and reduce absence, including persistent absence (90% or below).
- Ensure every pupil has access to full-time education to which they are entitled
- Act early to address patterns of absence
- Ensure parents perform their legal duty to ensure their children of compulsory school age are registered at school and attend regularly.
The government identifies six main strategies schools can adopt to promote good school attendance:
- Development of policy into effective practice which recognises the importance of school attendance and promotes it across the school’s ethos
- Promotion of a positive school environment
- Provision of clear and high attendance expectations
- Establishment of efficient and effective day-to-day management of attendance issues
- Effective communication and collaboration with parents and the community
- Targeting additional support for attendance issues on priority areas of need
How will Attendance Support help me and my child?
The school encourages open communication in order that we can understand any problems and issues that you and your child may be facing. We encourage open conversations so we can work together to understand how we can best support you with any difficulties which may be preventing your child from attending school every day, on time. We aim to fully understand, so that we can give you the relevant information, advice, and guidance, all with the aim of improving attendance.
Once we know your primary concerns, there are a number of ways through which we can try to resolve issues. Many parents and carers find working with the school in this way very helpful. Here are some examples:
- The Pastoral Team are available during the school day to support children in order to reach their full potential. For example, with friendship issues, transition, and emotional support. They can also help you to identify issues and give you information about helpful out of school support services.
- All Angels Federation Attendance works in partnership with the school’s SENDcos to support attendance. The school is aware that children with special educational needs and disabilities may need tailored support. Parents are encouraged to share information with the school’s SENDcos so that the school can respond to need before any issues arise.
- We understand that health issues, well-being or mental health can affect school attendance. Sometimes, these are newly emerging or general issues and in this case, the School Nurses can support you and your child, give further information and also liaise with other agencies (e.g GP) You can contact them yourself here: Healthy Child Programme Services- Just One Number.
- Sometimes you may find it easier for school to speak directly with your GP practice, E.g., in order that a medical professional can explain to us the impact of a medical condition on your child’s ability to attend school. But we can only do this with your consent. This requires the Joint Health Protocol to be completed. Further information about this protocol can found by clicking here: Joint Health Protocol .
- If your child has a verified and chronic health condition which prevents them from accessing school, we can make a referral to Norfolk County Council for a Medical Needs Assessment.This extensive co-ordination is with a view to maintaining and providing the education your child is entitled to. Further information about this service can found by clicking here: Medical Needs Service.
- We work with the Gypsy Roma Traveller Education Team within Norfolk County Council. If you would like to receive this support for you and your child, please speak with school. Further information about this protocol can found by clicking here: Gypsy Roma Traveller Education Team.
- Translation and Interpretation Services are available for parents who may need support with speaking English during meetings and conversations with school.
What happens if my child’s attendance does not improve?
We want to work together to improve the situation so that your child’s low attendance is not taken any further, as advised by the local authority. To prevent this next step, the school will work in partnership with parents through:
- Phone calls and letters
- Attendance/Medical Support Panels where we develop a plan and agree upon targets and actions for the school and the family
- Signposting to other agencies and relevant services
If you would like further advice about attendance, including fixed penalty notice for absence and school term dates and holidays, please click on: Norfolk County Council School Attendance .
If you feel like your child would benefit from any of the support mentioned, please contact the school office on (01603) 745812.