At St James Church of England Academy we place great importance on regular attendance at school as we know that missing school has a really detrimental impact on the progress that children make.
Regular attendance is a vital part of a child's academic and social success. The academy seeks to ensure that all its pupils receive a full-time education to make the most of their opportunities to realise their full potential. Staff work with pupils and their families to ensure each pupil attends school regularly and punctually. We can help with advice and support if you are experiencing any issues around attendance and punctuality.
Children should be at school, on time, every day the school is open, unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable. Permitting absence from school without a good reason is an offence by the parent. The academy has a legal duty to promote attendance and is required to publish attendance figures.
Every half-day absence from school has to be classified by the academy, (not by the parents), as either AUTHORISED or UNAUTHORISED. Authorised absences are mornings or afternoons away from school for a good reason like illness or other unavoidable cause. Unauthorised absences are those which the school does not consider reasonable and for which no 'leave' has been given. This includes:
- Parents keeping children off school unnecessarily, eg. shopping trips
- Truancy before or during the school day
- Absences which have never been properly explained
- Children who arrive at school too late to get a mark
Occasionally a child may be reluctant to attend school. Any problems with regular attendance are best sorted out between the academy, the parents and the child. If a child is reluctant to attend, it is never better to cover up their absence or to give in to pressure to excuse them from attending. This gives the impression that attendance does not matter and may make things worse.
Being on time for school is important to your child's education. If a child is persistently late, they miss the start of lessons which may have a negative impact on their learning, confidence and self-esteem. Lateness disrupts your child, their class and the staff working with them. School begins at 8.40, when the children come into school. Classroom doors close at 8.50, after which time children should enter through the main office.
Being 5 minutes late every day will result in your child losing around three learning days a year.
Being 15 minutes late every day equates to having two complete weeks off a year.
Being 30 minutes late daily equates to losing nineteen learning days a year.
Persistent lateness can result in a penalty notice being issued, which carries a fine.
If your child is absent through sickness or any unavoidable cause, please contact the school office as early as possible not no later than 9.00am on the first day of absence. This will be an authorised absence.
Appointments of any kind, such as a doctor’s or dentist appointment, should be arranged outside of school hours where possible. If this is unavoidable, please let the school office know and this will be authorised.
Children returning to school after illness should clearly be fit to do so and free from any infection.
Term Time Holidays
Government guidance does not permit parents to take children on holidays during term time except under the most exceptional circumstances.
If you do decide to take your child on a family holiday that has not been authorised, their absence will be recorded as 'unauthorised' and could result in a prosecution and a fine.
Most of our children have very good school attendance and we reward this by the presentation of a banner in the weekly awards assembly.
School closures will be announced as soon as the information has been verified and become available via the following methods:
Our full Attendance Policy is available on our Policies page here.