Attendance

 Every Day Counts!

Excellent attendance is essential for your child to achieve their full potential.

Heath Lane Academy Attendance Target is for every student to achieve above 97% attendance.

Please click headings below for further information

Important Attendance Information

Attend to Achieve

ATTEND TO ACHIEVE!

Important information for all parents, guardians and carers

 Excellent attendance is essential for your child to achieve their full potential

The school attendance target is that every student attends above 97%

What can parents/carers do to ensure that their child doesn’t miss out on important teaching and learning?

  • Remember that every day of attendance really does matter.
  • Arrive on time - students are expected to be in school by 8:40am for an 8:45am start. Late to school – students will be expected to complete a 30 mins after school detention on the same day – text messages will be sent to parents/guardians. Please contact the Attendance Officer on 01455 845061 if genuine reason for lateness.
  • Phone school daily whenever your child is absent giving reason for absence - we need to know by 9am, please. Put this number into your phone to help 01455 845061.  Evidence of an appointment is required if within school time.
  • Only allow your child to stay off school for genuine illness. We all get colds and coughs and minor illness should not be a reason to miss a whole day. Feel free to call us for advice.
  • Do not take holidays in school time - we will not authorise them.
  • Do not allow days off for birthdays or shopping trips.
  • Make routine dental, opticians or doctor’s appointments outside school time.
  • Ask your child about their day to check in on any issues which may affect them wanting to be in school.
  • Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any concerns which you think are affecting your child’s attendance. The Attendance and Pastoral team should be your first point of contact.  We will fully support your child to thrive and be safe in school.
  • Be aware of what your child’s attendance level is. Medical evidence may be requested to support absences – please click on the links to view Attendance Phases for Parent (1b) and Student (1c) on the Attendance Website.
  • We know that high attendance at school and achieving high grades are linked. Take a look at the table below to show how school attendance can affect outcomes.

Percentage of Attendance

Number of days off in a year

Number of Absent Sessions

Lessons Missed in a year

Chances of achieving 5 G4+ reduces to

98%

4

8

20

-

95%

10

20

50

-

94%

12

24

60

77%

92%

16

32

80

60%

90%

20

40

100

45%

88%

24

48

120

35%

86%

28

56

140

26%

Attendance Phases - Parent Information

Attendance Phases – Parent Information

At every stage of our Attendance Phases we welcome the opportunity to engage with parents and carers.  Early intervention and student support sits at the heart of our approach to raising levels of student attendance and achievement.

Heath Lane Academy prioritises the monitoring, support and robust action needed to secure high levels of attendance and works in close partnership with the Local Authority to place matters before the court in circumstances where parents/carers do not ensure that their child attends school regularly and punctually.

Phase 1

95%-92%

Below satisfactory attendance level

 

Unauthorised absences may be on the attendance record

  • The student will have an initial discussion with their Pastoral Leader to discuss their overall attendance rate.
  • Any underlying issues will be able to be fully discussed and parents and carers will be notified when required.
  • Attendance will be monitored each week by the Pastoral Leader to ensure that it moves towards the school target of 97%.
  • Where attendance does not improve or where a student has regular unauthorised absences, or parents continue to fail to notify the school of the reasons, students will be automatically be moved to Phase 2 or 3.

Phase 2

92% or below

Unsatisfactory attendance level

 

There are unauthorised absences on the attendance record

  • Parents will be invited to attend a School Attendance Meeting where concerns will be discussed to support students and families in finding a positive way forward and to agree actions to improve the student's attendance.  Attendance Action Plan with targets to be completed and agreed.
  • Where there are frequent absences due to illness, the school will request that medical evidence is provided before any further absences are authorised.  Medical evidence may take the form of a dated prescription, a prescribed medicine package with the child’s name and the date of issue or, an appointment card, dated with the child’s name on.
  • Please note that only the Headteacher, or delegated staff members can authorise school absence.

Phase 3

Below 90%

Persistent Absence

Significantly below satisfactory attendance level

 

Unauthorised absences remain on the attendance record

Important: Patterns of absence are a concern

Persistently Absent = 90% attendance or below

  • Students attendance that is 90% or below is categorised as persistent absence by the Department for Education
  • Unauthorised absences recorded, patterns of broken weeks of attendance or regular absence due to minor illness.
  • Parents will be invited to attend a formal Attendance Review Meeting with senior staff present where further agreements will be made and expectations clearly shared.
  • Where concerns persist, school is required to complete a formal referral to the Local Education Authority for irregular attendance.

Phase 4

Failure to improve

Risk of Local Authority prosecution for irregular attendance

Parents/Guardians have a duty to ensure their child's regular attendance at school and failure to do so is an offence under Section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996.

  • Where the Local Education Authority feel that there is sufficient evidence that an offence has been committed under the Education Act, section 444, the case will be recommended to be placed before the court. If parents are found guilty of the offence this will include a fine of up to £2,500 and the court can also impose imprisonment for up to three months.

Reporting Student Absence – contact school by 9am on 01455 845061

How to report an absence

REPORTING STUDENT ABSENCE

If your child is absent

  • Parent/Carer to ring on each day of absence before 9am on 01455 84501 and Press 1 to leave a message on the attendance line.
  • Please clearly say the child’s name, year/tutor (if known), reason for absence and who it is calling.
  • If you require to give further details, please request a call back.

Arriving Late to School due to an appointment

  • Parent/Carer to contact school by phone by 9am on 01455 845061 giving details of any pre‑planned or emergency appointments.
  • Please provide evidence in the form of an appointment card, prescriptions or referral letters to ensure authorised absence.
  • Students are expected to attend school before or after the appointment.

What happens if student is refusing to attend school

  • Contact the Attendance/Pastoral Team as soon as possible. 
  • Please let us know if there are any issues that are affecting attendance so we can discuss strategies and appropriate support if required.

IMPORTANT: Actions on School Absence where no contact has been received

  • We shall continue to send texts in the morning if students are absent from school and parent/carer has not contacted or provided a valid reason.
  • If school have not received a response to the text within 15 minutes we will follow up with a phone call to check on the child.
  • If we do not get a reply to the call or are concerned about a reply; then Senior staff will make a Home Welfare Check immediately. These visits may result in the child being brought into school by Senior Staff, to support the parent/carer.

Parent(s)/Carer(s)

  • We welcome the opportunity to engage with parents and carers.  
  • Please contact school on 01455 845061 to let us know if there are any issues that are affecting punctuality or attendance.
  • Early intervention and student support sits at the heart of our approach to raising levels of student attendance and achievement.

Actions on school absence including Home Welfare Checks

Important: Actions on School Absence

Last year we changed attendance procedures in line with strict guidance from the Department for Education to ensure both full-time education and welfare for all children.

Actions on Absence of Student:

  1. We shall continue to send texts in the morning if students are absent from school and parent/carer has not contacted or provided a valid reason
  2. If school have not received a response to the text within 15 minutes we will follow up with a phone call to check on the child
  3. If we do not get a reply to the call or are concerned about a reply; then Senior staff will make a Home Welfare Check immediately. These visits may result in the child being brought into school by Senior Staff, to support the parent. 
  4. If following these steps we are unable to speak to anyone and/or visually see/locate the child then we may make contact with the Police and/or Social Care to highlight a welfare concern.
  5. Phone school daily whenever your child is absence giving the reason for absence – we need to know by 9am please.  Evidence of an appointment is requested if within school time.
  6. Please make sure we have up-to-date contact details; also that you keep us informed of planned absences. 
  7. At any point, if the school is concerned, we may make unannounced Home Visits – this may be due to low levels of attendance or continuous absence. 

Parents and carers have a big impact on children’s attendance and we appreciate your alertness 

 Guidance on Illness - Parent Information

Guidance on illness – Parent Information

The most common reason given for children to miss school is illness. However, most of the time childhood ailments can be managed in school.

Is my child well enough to attend school?

Many children experience common ailments from time to time. Most of these do not need a prescription, are rarely serious and do not require time away from school. Often treating your child’s ailment or illness yourself, or with advice and medicines from your pharmacist, can be the quickest and easiest way to deal with it.

What if a pupil feels unwell during the school day?

If a pupil feels unwell during the school day they should inform their class teacher, the class teacher will then make an assessment of the child’s ability to stay in lesson. If there is a medical emergency a first aider will be called for immediately. If a child is deemed too ill to stay in school, a decision will be made by the pastoral manager and the attendance officer, and parents will be informed. 

What if a pupil needs to take medication during the school day?

If a pupil needs to take medication in school, we advise that parents/carers inform the school via a telephone call or a letter, there is a medical consent form that will need to be completed, a copy of this is on the HLA website {signpost link} and the school will make arrangements to safely store the medicine in school. 

Advice on common ailments

Colds and coughs

A child may attend school with slight cold and cough.

If your child has asthma, remember they may need their blue inhaler more often.

Aches and pains

If your child has a persistent tooth or ear ache, they need to see a dentist or a doctor without delay. A child whose only complaint is slight headache does not usually need to be kept at home.

Tummy ache and sickness

If your child complains of ‘non severe’ tummy ache or has had an episode of sickness but is generally feeling well, has a headache or other symptoms persistently and is not wanting to attend school, this may be linked to your child being unhappy at school or with something else e.g. friendship issues or finding school work difficult. Speak to your child and contact a member of the pastoral student support team if this is the case so that appropriate plans of support can be put in place.

Severe vomiting and diarrhoea

If a child has severe vomiting or has diarrhoea, keep them off school and ensure adequate fluid intake. Children should return to school 48 hours after the last episode of diarrhoea or vomiting.

Sore throat

If your child complains of a slight sore throat and has no other symptoms, they are fit to come to school. If the sore throat occurs with a raised temperature, they need to stay at home or seek medical advice where appropriate.

Lack of sleep

Establishing good habits is important. Ensure that your child goes to bed early as lack of sleep will affect his/her ability to function in the morning, leading to lateness.

Medical appointments

Where possible please arrange doctor, dentist and optician appointments outside of school hours. If this is not possible, your child should attend school for the remainder of the day.

Guidance on infection control in schools

www.publichealth.hscni.net/sites/default/files/Guidance_on_infection_control_in schools_poster.pdf

We ask that parents inform school immediately if diagnosed or suspected infections to help protect students and staff.

Illness

Recommended period to be kept away from school

Chickenpox*

Until all vesicles have crusted over

Cold sores (herpes simplex)

None

Conjunctivitis

None

Diarrhoea and/or Vomiting

48 hours from last episode of diarrhoea or vomiting

Flu (Influenza)

Until recovered

German Measles (Rubella)*

4 days from onset of rash

Glandular Fever

None

Hand, foot and mouth

None

Head Lice (Nits)

None

Impetigo

Until lesions are crusted and healed, or 48 hours after commencing antibiotic treatment

Measles*

4 days from onset of rash

Meningococcal Meningitis* / Septicaemia*

Until recovered

Meningitis viral*

None

Mumps*

Exclude child for 5 days after onset of swelling

Ringworm

Exclusion not usually required

Scabies

Child can return after first treatment

Scarlet fever*

Child can return 24 hours after commencing appropriate antibiotic treatment

Shingles

Exclude only if rash is weeping and cannot be covered

Tonsillitis

None

Threadworms

None

Warts and Verrucae

None

Whooping cough*

48 hours from commencing antibiotic treatment, or 21 days from onset of illness if no antibiotic treatment

*denotes a notifiable disease:  It is a statutory requirement that doctors report a notifiable disease to the Director of Public Health via the Duty Room.

Requesting Leave of Absence

Information and Exceptional Circumstances

Student Leave of Absence Information and Supporting Evidence

As you will all be aware, current attendance regulations state that a Head Teacher may not grant a leave of absence during term-time unless there are exceptional circumstances. Under the Midland Academies Trust policy we are unable to grant any requests for leave of absence due to holiday.

Parents do not have the automatic right to withdraw pupils from school and, in law, have to apply for permission in advance.

Exceptional circumstances are defined as exceptional significant family events or circumstances, and will be considered on a case by case basis.  The Head Teacher will consider every request individually.

Some of the examples of what will not meet exceptional circumstances criteria are:

  • Cheaper holidays in the UK or abroad
  • Family Day Trips
  • Relatives coming to visit
  • Visiting family or friends that have differing school holidays
  • Attending family weddings or visits to see family abroad

You are advised not to make any arrangements until your request has been considered by the school.  If you withdraw your child without prior permission, you can be fined.

If your child is away from school during this period it will be recorded as Unauthorised Absence. As a school we are obliged to inform you that you may be subject to a Penalty Notice if your child’s absence from school is unauthorised. This is in line with Leicestershire County Councils Code of Conduct.

The Penalty Notice fine would be £60 per parent, per child if paid within 21 days, rising to £120 per parent, per child if paid between 21-28 days. If the fine is not paid within 28 days you may be prosecuted under S444.1 of the Education Act 1996. I must advise you that if the prosecution takes place, the maximum fine is £1,000 per parent, per child. This reflects the seriousness of unauthorised absence from school.

Leave of Absence forms can be obtained from reception or accessed on the HLA website.

Leave of Absence Request Form 

Please follow the link to complete the form

Leave Of Absence request Form

If you cannot access the form for any reason please download and print off our old form (at the bottom of this page) and return to Reception

School Calendar

 

 

Punctuality

PUNCTUALITY MATTERS!

Arrive on time

  • Students are expected to be in school and lining up for lesson by 8:40am for an 8:45am lesson start
  • During Covid start times are staggered, so please see School Day for you child's current start time 

What happens if students are late

  • Late to school – students who arrive at school after 8:45am will be required to sign in at reception and will be given a slip to attend a same day 30 minutes After School Late Detention.
  • Persistent late – if a student is regularly late to school additional sanctions of a same day 60 minutes After School Late Detention.

Arriving Late to School

  • The student will be at a disadvantage.
  • The student may miss important knowledge/content at the start of the lesson and interrupt learning.
  • Persistent lateness - the Pastoral Lead will discuss with the student.

Parent(s)/Carer(s)

  • We welcome the opportunity to engage with parents and carers.  
  • Please contact school on 01455 845061 to let us know if there are any issues that are affecting punctuality or attendance.
  • Early intervention and student support sits at the heart of our approach to raising levels of student attendance and achievement.

5.    Attendance Policy - attached below

6.     Leicestershire County Council Pupil Services - Attendance Code of Conduct including Penalty Notice and Prosecution
https://www.leicestershire.gov.uk/education-and-children/schools-colleges-and-academies/school-attendance