At William Edwards School, the staff endeavours to provide an excellent learning environment and experience for their pupils. We aim to get the most out of everyday through challenging and supported learning in a stimulating working environment. We hope that for those pupils who attend school every day that school is a thoroughly worthwhile and rewarding experience.
There are very obvious benefits that come to pupils who have an attendance figure of 98% and above over those who do not. As well as setting up a positive routine and attitude towards life these young people rarely miss out. Every day there is a opportunity to learn something new, whether it is knowledge or a skill. They get to interact with their peers and teachers and learn through a consistent and unbroken experience. The statistics support this view. The highest attending students gain better examination results, especially now there is a revised assessment system being used at the end of KS4 (GCSEs). The modular approach where the pupils took a series of exams of over the two years and the opportunity to re-take several times has now ended for most subjects. This means the whole of the two year courses are assessed with an examination at the end of the course. This means time regularly missed by a pupil through non-attendance of school can have serious repercussions; for example; incomplete topics through missed lessons are likely to feature on the exam papers at the end of Year 11 which undoubtedly puts a child at a disadvantage to another who did not miss those lessons.
Furthermore, there have been some changes legally concerning Non-Attendance. The details of which have been summarised into some key points below:
School Attendance – Penalty Notice Code of Conduct for Unauthorised Absence from School
As you will already be aware regular and punctual attendance at school is a legal requirement for all pupils and is essential if they are to maximise the opportunities available to them. It is a parents responsibility to ensure that their child attends regularly.
An offence occurs if a parent fails to secure a child’s attendance at a school at which they are a registered pupil and that attendance is not authorised by the school.
In light of the above William Edwards School will issue Penalty Notices in cases of unauthorised absence in one or more of the following circumstances:
- At least 19 sessions (2 sessions (AM and PM registration) = 1 full school day) are recorded against a pupil’s name within the previous 12 weeks.
- If the Head Teacher does not authorise a request from a parent for term time leave of absence of 10 sessions or more and the parent takes the leave.
- A parent is not willing to take responsibility for securing their child’s attendance and has not cooperated with any proposed voluntary or supportive measures.
- Where a parent continually fails to provide an explanation for a pupil’s absence when requested to do so.
Penalty Notices must be paid in full and if the recipient fails to pay the fine within 28 days the Local Authority will prosecute for the offence to which the Notice applies. There is no statutory right of appeal against the issuing of a Penalty Notice.