Attendance and holidays in term time
At Brunswick Primary School, we want all children to have the best possible attendance at school to enable each and every child to reach their full potential.
There is a strong link between good school attendance and achieving good results for children. We also know that there is a direct link between poor attendance and poor attainment for a child and young person
Your responsibilities as a parent/carer
If your child is between 5 and 16 years old and is a registered pupil at a school, it is your legal responsibility to make sure that your child has a suitable education either by regular school attendance or otherwise.
Parental support is critical in ensuring that children achieve in education, and support and guidance is always available from our school. We know that we need to work together with parents/carers to support our children to attend school and to be successful. We want all parents/carers to help their children by making sure they attend school every day and arrive on time. Doing this will ensure that your child feels confident, up to date with learning, and up to date with their circle of friends.
90% attendance sounds good, but means that your child misses:
One half day each week
Nearly four weeks every school year
Over one school year in a school career
At Brunswick Primary, we expect all our students to aim for 100% attendance and punctuality. We define good attendance as consistently over 96.1%:
- 100% Excellent Attendance
- Over 96.1% Good Attendance
Holidays in Term Time
In 1st September 2013 the Government rules changed in relation to holidays or trips during term time. We are no longer allowed to authorise leave for holidays or trips during term time.
Parents need to be aware that if their child is out of school for holidays or trips, legal action for unauthorised absences is taken.
- Each parent/carer will receive a Penalty Notice of £120.00 for each child. This will be reduced to £60.00 if paid within 21 days of the fine being issued.
- Any such Penalty Notice or prosecution may relate to your child’s attendance record both prior to and subsequence to this letter.
- Each parent/carer may receive a court summons, which may lead to a criminal record and a fine.
- Your child is also at risk of losing their school place.
Previously, we have authorised occasional holidays, but we are NO LONGER allowed to do this. The Government have made it very clear that children have 13 weeks holidays from school to use to go away.
We all want the best for every child in our school. We appreciate your support in this matter.
Authorised absences from school
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013, which came into force on 1st September 2013, removes reference to holidays and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days. The amendments now make it clear that head teachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless ‘exceptional circumstances’ exist.
Definitions of these circumstances do not exist within this legislation and in order to treat all requests fairly the Attendance Panel at Brunswick Primary use NAHT guidance that suggests the following as circumstances, which might be considered to be exceptional:
- Visits to seriously ill relatives
- Bereavement of a close family member is usually considered an exceptional circumstance but for the funeral service only, not extended leave
- Important religious observances are often taken into account but only for the ceremony and travelling time, not extended leave. This is intended for one off situations rather than regular or recurring events
- Wedding within the immediate family
- Service personnel returning from a long tour of duty
- Families needing time together to recover from trauma or crisis
Unauthorised absences from school - Fixed Penalty Notices
The school adheres to the Brighton and Hove City Council’s Code of Conduct with regards to student attendance. It may therefore be necessary to issue fixed-penalty notices in some circumstances.
CIRCUMSTANCES WHEN PENALTY NOTICES MIGHT BE ISSUED
- Persistent late arrival at school (after the register has closed amounting to 10 more sessions in 10 weeks).
- Pupils whose attendance has not reached a satisfactory (90% attendance – 2015 threshold) level during a 6 week period following intensive support
- Where parents allow their child to be present in a public place during school hours without reasonable justification in a fixed term or permanent exclusion
- Penalty notices will be issued as a result of persistent absence as outlined the Brunswick Attendance policy.
- Penalty notices will be issued for all unauthorised holidays taken during term time
Paper copies are available from the school office
Celebrating Excellent Attendance
Parents will (from the 6th June) be able to find their child’s attendance marks on their personal Arbor page
Children who have achieved good or excellent attendance will receive a certificate celebrating their attendance
Each week children who have managed 100% attendance will be entered into a draw and winners will enjoy privileges such as – early lunch, refreshments with staff, extra play time etc
Most improved attendance certificates will also be awarded to individuals
Improved punctuality can will also be rewarded with stickers and praise
Attendance and punctuality will be promoted through assemblies and “Attendance Teds” given to classes with the highest weekly attendance
Percentage tables will be published in newsletters
A £25 reward is given each term to the class with the highest attendance that term, this can be spent on whole class treats, outings or equipment for the children to use
Whole class treats that can be worked towards will also be planned with individuals who need support with their attendance
Classes who achieve 100% attendance will have privileges such as - sitting on a bench during celebration assemblies, early play and other non-monetary rewards such as hot chocolate with a member of staff