Attendance and Absence
It is the responsibility of parents of a child of school age to make sure that their child is educated. Most do this by sending their child to school regularly. Attendance is recorded twice a day, morning and afternoon.
Absence from school is recorded as ‘authorised’ i.e. it has been approved by the education authority, or as ‘unauthorised’ i.e. the absence remaining unexplained by the parent.
Please let the school know by letter, email to the school’s generic address or phone if your child is likely to be absent. If there is no explanation from a child’s parents / carers, the absence will be regarded as unauthorised.
Please make every effort to avoid family holidays during term time as this disrupts your child’s education and reduces learning time. In certain extreme situations, the head teacher can approve absence from school for a family holiday for example, in traumatic domestic circumstances where the holiday would improve the cohesion and wellbeing of the family. Please discuss your plans with the head teacher before the holiday. If the head teacher does not give permission before the holiday, it will be recorded as unauthorised absence. The head teacher may also exercise discretion when a parent can prove that work commitments make a family holiday impossible during school holiday times. Normally, your employer will need to provide evidence of your work commitments. Absence approved by the head teacher on this basis is regarded as authorised absence.
Parents from minority ethnic and/or religious communities may request that their children be permitted to be absent from school to celebrate recognised religious and/or cultural events. Absence approved by the head teacher on this basis is regarded as authorised absence. Extended leave can also be granted on request for families returning to their country of origin for cultural or care reasons.
A supportive approach is taken to unexplained absence. However the education authority has legal powers to write to, interview or prosecute parents, or refer pupils to the Reporter to the Children’s Panel.
All pupils are expected to attend school punctually each day, arrive prior to the warning bell at 8.35am. Pupils who arrive late report to the School Office where a lateness slip is issued. Persistent late coming is investigated by House staff and appropriate action taken.
An automated telephone message is sent if a pupil has been late for school.