Southway is committed to providing the very best possible education and we believe that regular attendance is essential to every child’s success. Research links attendance with achievement, indicating that even occasional broken weeks can have a negative effect on children’s progress. We believe that the most important factor in promoting good attendance is the development of positive attitudes towards school.
Lateness The law requires children to attend school regularly and this includes arriving on time each day and it is a parent’s responsibility to ensure that your child arrives promptly for registration. The registers are taken at 8.45am and close at 9.05am. Children arriving between these times will be marked as late, children arriving after 9.05am will be recorded as absent for the morning session.
Illness If your child is too unwell to attend school, please call the school’s dedicated absence line on 01243 810200 and press 1 to report your child absent. Please leave a brief message stating the name and class of your child, the reason for absence and likely date of return. Messages should be left before 9.30am. Please be aware that any absences with reasons not provided are recorded as unauthorised. If your child accrues 5 or more consecutive day’s illness absence, the school may ask you to provide supporting evidence. This can be a medical appointment card, a copy of a prescription or prescribed medication for your child. The school reserves the right to code absence as unauthorised where no such evidence is provided.
Medical Appointments Whenever possible, medical appointments should be made outside school hours. If it is absolutely necessary for your child to attend a medical appointment during the school day, an appointment card must be produced for the session to be authorised.
Holidays in term time In September 2013, the Department for Education amended the guidelines in relation to absences in term-time. The new legislation will only allow a head teacher to grant a leave of absence if there are exceptional circumstances. A family holiday during term time does not fall into the category of “exceptional circumstances” and therefore such requests for leave of absence will be refused. If you consider that your request for absence is exceptional you will need to complete an “Absence from Learning” form and return it to the school office at least 10 days before the start of the absence. Please be aware that if your request is declined and you nevertheless take your child out of school, the absence will be recorded as unauthorised. Unauthorised absence may result in a Fixed Penalty Notice being issued. The notice is a fine of £60 per parent per child if paid within 28 days of receipt of the notice; but rising to £120 if paid after 28 days. If the fine remains unpaid, the Local Authority will consider instigating a prosecution in the Magistrates Court for the original offence of poor school attendance.
Celebrating Attendance Whole school assemblies are held termly to celebrate individual children’s attendance. Children who have attended school every day during the entire term will have TWO entries in the prize draw. Children who have been absent during a half term will have ONE entry in the prize draw. Draws are held for each key stage, therefore, three very lucky children receive a special prize in the termly celebration assembly and have the opportunity to win a fantastic prize!!