Good attendance at school is key to success. Missing school for any reason can cause your child to fall behind in their learning. Sometimes children also find it difficult to settle back into school after a break. In the longer term, evidence shows that reduced levels of attendance are likely to affect the progress of any child, whatever their needs or ability, and can also result in lower levels of qualifications being achieved.
At Castle Hill we consider 95% and above to be good attendance. If your child manages this then you are giving them the opportunity to achieve and succeed, not just now but throughout their life.
What to do if your child is ill
It’s important that you contact us as soon as possible on the first day of any absence by phoning school on 0161 285 3925. We’ll need to know the reason for the absence so that we can record it correctly. If your child is absent for more than one day it’s essential that you keep us updated on a daily basis or give us a definite return date.
If you don’t contact school you will receive a telephone call, or text, asking you to explain your child’s absence. Following up absences in this way is a legal obligation for all schools, but we also do it to make sure your child is safe and that you are aware that they are not in school.
In the case of unexplained and/or persistent absence, you will be contacted in the first instance by our Attendance Officer, Mrs McGregor, and will be sent a letter informing you of your child’s attendance level.
Please also be aware that where pupils miss a lot of school through illness, schools are expected to investigate, and where appropriate, request medical evidence before agreeing to authorise such absences.
Your co-operation and support in this matter is greatly appreciated.
Our full Attendance Policy can be viewed here:
The following document summarises the key points from this policy:
Holidays during term time
The Department for Education has amended the regulations and guidance in relation to absences in term time. There is no automatic right to take your child out of school during term time.
The Department for Education’s regulations and guidance only allow a Headteacher to grant a leave of absence if there are exceptional circumstances. When determining whether or not an absence in such circumstances can be authorised, the Headteacher will also determine the number of days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted. If you consider that your request falls into this category, you will need to complete the Student Leave of Absence form on the reverse of this notification. A response will be sent to you as soon as possible. If the absence requested is not considered to be an exceptional circumstance but you nevertheless take your son or daughter out of school, the absence will be recorded as unauthorised in line with Local Authority guidance.
Therefore, in the case of an unauthorised absence, our School Attendance Officer will be notified and a Penalty Notice could be issued. Please note that Penalty Notices are issued to each parent for each child taken out of school. A Penalty Notice is a fine of £60 which increases to £120 if not paid within the first 21 days. If the Penalty Notice remains unpaid, this will result in further legal intervention. All absence requests must be completed on the Student Leave of Absence form, letters/emails will not be accepted. Any absence from school will disrupt your child’s learning. You may consider some absences to be educational but your son or daughter will still miss out on the teaching that his or her peers will receive. Children returning from an absence are unprepared for the lessons which build on the teaching they have missed.
Rewarding good attendance
We encourage and reward good attendance by operating an initiative called Attendance Matters which helps pupils to monitor their own attendance. Inclusion in our half-termly rewards afternoons is also conditional on good attendance.
We very much appreciate your support in both encouraging good attendance and keeping us informed if your child is absent. It’s also important to let us know if you think your child may be making excuses not to come to school, this can be a sign of friendship difficulties or worries about school and it’s important we know about these as soon as possible.