Regular school attendance is essential if children are to get the most out of their educational opportunities. The Local Authority and Greengate Lane Academy have a responsibility to provide the best education possible but we can only do this if pupils attend regularly. Taking time out of school for holidays is disruptive and makes it difficult for pupils to catch up on work missed.
Apart from when a child is ill, Government guidance states that all absence in term time should be UNAUTHORISED, other than under exceptional circumstances. Such circumstances DO NOT include family holidays, and parents are also encouraged to make any medical or dental appointments after school. Parents/carers MUST complete a leave of absence request form for any time their child may be out of school, except if the child is ill. If your child is too unwell to attend school you must notify us by telephone or text no later than 9am on the first day of absence, and update us regularly about the child’s condition.
The advice from the Department of Education is that the current law does not give parent/carers any entitlement to take their child on holiday during term time. Taking unauthorised term time holidays and/or persistent absence may make you liable for a Penalty Notice and fine. If the penalty fine is not paid, prosecution through court will follow. This could result in a further fine of up to £1,000 plus costs.
Greengate Lane Academy is committed to raising the profile of attendance and its link to achievement. It is important therefore that you work with us by ensuring that your child attends school on time, every day and by not taking your child out of school for holidays during term time.
Thank you for your support in this matter.
Changes to Persistent Absent Levels in Schools
Our school considers regular school attendance a priority to improve the educational outcomes of our children. In the past the Department of Education (DfE) have said that pupils with school attendance below 85% are at risk of becoming a persistent absentee.
85% = 28.5 days of lost learning each academic year.
From September 2015, this threshold increased to 90%. Therefore pupils with attendance each half term below 90% will be at risk of becoming a persistent absentee. Any absence including illness, medical appointments, term time leave, punctuality and unauthorised absence will affect your child’s attendance rate.
90% = 19 days of lost learning each academic year.
If your child’s attendance becomes a cause of concern, then a referral may be made to the Local Authority for consideration with me about how to improve your child’s attendance rate. Like you, we want the very best for all our children; we hope, therefore, that you will support us in ensuring your child attends school every day, and on time, in order for them to access the education they are entitled to, enabling them to reach their full potential.