In order for children to get the maximum benefit out of their time at school, they need to attend school regularly. Regular attendance means that children don’t miss important parts of the curriculum whilst also enhancing personal development. We are very proud of our record for attendance with the majority of children missing little or no time at all.
Punctuality is also very important. Children who arrive late may find it awkward walking into class late and they may miss the beginning of a lesson which may hinder their understanding of the topic being taught. Children are expected to arrive between 5 and 10 minutes before the start of the school day so that they are ready to enter school on time.
If parents are running a little behind schedule the school office should be notified by 9am. Children arriving to school late are to be signed in by a parent at the school office, children who arrive by themselves will be signed in by the office and parents will be contacted.
Absence from School
If your child is unwell and is not going to attend school, it is essential that we know as soon as possible. Either drop a note into school or contact the office by telephone or email as soon as possible but before 9:30am. It is a legal requirement that you let us know that your child is going to be off, giving a reason for the absence and how long you expect them to be away from school.
If no contact is made with the school office before 9:30am, it is our policy to call you to establish why your child is absent. This is to ensure that your child is safe and not coming to any harm.
Wherever possible, please try to make appointments out of school hours or during holidays so not to disrupt learning. If this is not possible, please advise the school as soon as possible of the appointment. The school will ask for a copy of the appointment letter to copy and hold on file, or if you receive a text for an appointment please show a member of the office staff. Emergency appointments that are made on the same day will require parents to ask at the appointment for a signed slip to bring in to school.
In 2013 the law tightened so that Headteachers are now only meant to grant a term time leave of absence in ‘exceptional circumstances’. If your request is for a funeral, please go to the bottom of this page for information.
Our new approach is that a leave of absence will be authorised as long as certain criteria are met. If these criteria are not met then an unauthorised absence will lead to a penalty notice.
Attendance in the rolling year must not below 95% (unless it was an authorised leave of absence in the previous school year that takes it below 95%).
95% is chosen as a round number which is just below the national average (96%) and the Mowden average which is slightly higher still. 5% absence is exactly 9 ½ days, which you might find useful to remember. In practice this means that, for example, if you request an absence for 1st October, then your child’s attendance full the 12 months from 1st October last year will be calculated. This is fairer to you than if we calculated it from just the 1st September in the current year where an occasional day’s absence would then count higher.
- 10 days absence is the maximum that any child may take.
10 days (2 school weeks) is a historically acceptable figure and quite fair I would suggest in the context of ‘exceptional’.
- More than one request per school year is not permitted, irrespective of the number of days requested.
In other words, a child cannot keep topping up their requests until 10 days is used up. Any more than one leave of absence would no longer be ‘exceptional’.
- Year 6 children are not permitted any holidays from September until the end of May.
All schools include this. We don’t want to jeopardise their SATs preparations.
- There is no automatic parental right to take a child out of school for a holiday and the Headteacher makes the final decision for all requests. No holiday will be authorised in retrospect.
This last sentence makes the point that a parent must always tell us in advance of a holiday absence; it won’t be authorised afterwards.
Please click here to download “An Application for Term Time Only Absence” form.
Click for details of holiday dates for academic year 2019-2020 & 2020-2021.
We treat funerals differently, so that a child can attend the funeral of a loved one. Please fill in the form and specify that it is for a funeral. The Headteacher will decide each one on a case by case basis.