Regular and punctual attendance is linked closely to achievement and attainment and school staff wish to work with parents/carers to ensure that children can reach their full potential. The school is required by law to maintain an accurate record of the attendance and absence of each pupil and parents are requested to assist in this process by keeping the school informed if their child is to be absent for any reason.
It is important to note that if a child does not arrive at school and there is no reasonable explanation provided for his/her absence then members of staff will be required to ascertain the whereabouts and safety of the individual child. In order to avoid causing unnecessary concern for parents/carers and staff, the importance of good communication between home and school cannot be over-emphasised.
Parents/carers are asked to assist school staff in the manner detailed below:
If your child is unable to attend school through illness please telephone the school between 7.30 and 8.30 am on the first day of his/her absence
When you contact the school it would be helpful if an indication could be given as to the child's expected length of absence from school
Parents/carers are encouraged not to arrange family holidays during term time.
Except in cases of emergency, planned appointments for children to attend the dentist or doctor should be made outwith the school day
Group Call, an automatic telephone system for contacting parents, is operational in the school.
We will use Group Call to help us contact parents quickly if a pupil is absent from school and we do not have an explanation. If we do not have an explanation for a pupil's absence, we will attempt to contact the parent by telephone by 10.00am at the latest on the first morning of their child's absence.
In order to use the Group Call system, please provide us with a mobile telephone contact number. We can then alert you by text message. If you cannot be, or do not want to be, contacted by mobile phone text message, we will contact you by recorded voice message using the other emergency contact numbers you have given. Both the text message and the voice message will ask parents to contact the school as soon as possible.
Keeping contact numbers up to date is a constant task for us in the school as parents move, or change their telephone number. You should inform us immediately when your contact details change, so that we are able to reach you as quickly as possible should we need to.
When you receive an alert from the Group Call system, please respond to the school as soon as possible, and by 10.30am at the latest. If the school has not received an explanation for a pupil's absence by 10.30am at the latest, a risk assessment will be conducted, and other action to follow up the unexplained absence including the involvement of education welfare officers, social workers or the police may be taken.
We hope that improved absence reporting will help increase the safety and well-being of all pupils, but must recognise that it cannot prevent every incident from occurring. We hope you will work closely with us to reduce unexplained absence by following the above procedures. By working together in this way, we can improve the security and well being of pupils at the school.