At Christchurch Infant School we want every child at our school to have the best education possible.
Attending school every day is crucial to the education and social skills of your child.
A good education will help give your child the best possible start in life. Poor school attendance damages educational achievement and the future progress of your child. Promoting and supporting good attendance at school is essential to learning and attainment.
We expect all children on roll to attend every day, when the school is in session, as long as they are fit and healthy enough to do so. We will also make the best provision we can for those children who, for whatever reason, are prevented from coming to school.
One area we would like to improve is the overall attendance of our children. The majority of children at our school attend regularly, however, there are some children who would benefit from attending more.
Children have a better chance to achieve their best if they attend school regularly and Christchurch Infant School strives to achieve excellent attendance. You may also be interested to know, as parents, that research tells us that adults who attended school regularly have become the most qualified, have better employment opportunities, are able to articulate themselves more fluently and confidently and live a longer, happier life.
Christchurch Infant School strives for 96% attendance and the current government guidelines for attendance is 95%. A few absences can quickly add up to a significant loss in learning time. For example, over a school year a child with 95% attendance has been absent from school for the equivalent of 10 full days (two weeks) out of 190 days.
BCP, our local authority is committed to ensuring the highest possible attendance for every child and support us fully. At Christchurch Infant School, we endeavour to support you in any way we can to overcome any barriers that may prevent your child from coming into school.
We have several points of contact to support you to enable your child to be in school on a regular basis and these are as follows:
Notifying the school if your child is absent
If your child is ill, please call the school office in the morning, before 8.30am and leave a message on the absence line to inform us that they will be absent from school. The school reserves the right to ask for medical evidence if a child is frequently absent due to repeated illness.
You can leave a voicemail on the absence line and we may ring you back if we require further information.
Please do not use Tapestry for reporting a child’s absence in EYFS.
Monitoring attendance is an important part of our safeguarding procedure and is routinely monitored and reviewed on a regular basis. Parents will be contacted if a child’s attendance drops below 95%. In addition, class teachers will report attendance to all parents at scheduled parents evenings. An Attendance Surgery will take place if attendance continues to decline.
When a child has attendance below 90%, they are classified as a Persistent Absentee and parents will be invited to a meeting to discuss how we can work together to improve attendance.
Punctuality is also important, as lateness disrupts learning not only for the child arriving late, but also for the children in their class. There are learning sessions starting immediately after the doors close which are an integral part of their education.
8:30am school gates are opened.
8:50am classroom doors and registers open.
9am classroom doors and registers close. The bell is rung to signify the start of the school day. Children should be in their classroom and ready for learning by this time.
Children arriving after 9am and after are coded as late (L code) and are to arrive through the school office signing in on the electronic screen by parents/carers, giving a reason for lateness.
9:30am children arriving after this time are coded as an unauthorised late (U code).
Requests for absence during term time
A request for leave of absence should be submitted to the school using the Leave of Absence Form, which can be found on the school website, or a copy can be collected from the office. The form must be completed and submitted to the school office at least two weeks prior to the date of absence requested.
A leave of absence request will be considered in a fair and consistent manner by the Headteacher, taking into account the reasoning behind the absence, whether the request was submitted at least two weeks in advance and the current attendance data for each pupil in question.
In line with current legislation, Headteachers are only allowed to grant leave of absence from school in exceptional circumstances. The following situations could be considered as exceptional circumstances:
family wedding of a close relative
an educational purpose; a fixed date sporting event or a music exam.
Exceptional circumstances are rare, significant, unavoidable and short; ‘unavoidable’ should be taken to mean an event that could not be scheduled for another time.
On most occasions, the following scenarios cannot be considered ‘exceptional’:
family holidays or breaks
parents profession or place of work making it difficult to align school and work holidays
educational visits arranged by family during school time
family birthdays or other events.
Following an application for term time absence, parents/carers will be notified of the Headteacher’s decision. If the circumstances are not considered to be exceptional, it is possible that a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) may be issued. FPN’s are requested in line with current guidance from the local authority and are issued on a ‘per parent, per child’ basis.
Medical appointments, where possible, should be booked outside of school hours. If a medical appointment is booked within school time, evidence of this appointment will need to be provided.
Common child illnesses
As before, we continue to follow the guidelines set by PHE and BCP council which states that a child who tests positive on a lateral flow test should follow the procedure below:
If a child or young person tests positive for Covid-19, they should try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 3 full days. This starts from the day after the positive test.
Children are to remain at home until their temperature is normal and they are well in themselves.
Diarrhoea and/or vomiting
A child should be 48 hours clear from the last episode of diarrhoea and/or vomiting before attending school.
Coughs and colds
We are happy for a child to attend school with a cough or cold providing the child is well in themselves and they do not have a high temperature. If they have a high temperature of 38 degrees or above the recommendation is that they should remain home until the temperature is normal.
A child with impetigo can return to school 48 hours after treatment has started.
A child with chicken pox should remain at home until their last blister has crusted over.
A child can attend school with conjunctivitis providing the eye has been treated accordingly and your child is not unwell.
Hand, Foot and Mouth
Keep your child off school whilst they are unwell. As soon as they feel better, they can return to school and there is no need to wait for the blisters to heal.
If you or your child has scarlet fever, stay away from school for 24 hours after you take the first dose of antibiotics.
Please visit the NHS links below for further information on health conditions:
Is my child too ill for school? - NHS (www.nhs.uk)