Attendance Matters – Aim for 100%
Shelley College aims to maximise attendance rates in order to ensure that all students are able to take the fullest advantage of the learning experiences available to them and are prepared for the world of work and further study. Every child has a fundamental right to be educated and parents have a duty to ensure their child’s full attendance at school. It is an expectation that students receive a full-time education and therefore if attendance concerns arise, as a school we will work with families and the Local Authority to ensure that support and challenge is put in place in order to ensure that every student can aim for 100% each week.
At Shelley College we strive for 100% attendance for all students. Each week, every student has a fresh opportunity to achieve 100%. Every half term, every student has a fresh opportunity to achieve 100%. We focus on praising students who meet that ambition each week through reward points, form time treats and end of term rewards. We appreciate that there could be occasions where absences occur, we just ask that parents work with us to report these in line with our absence processes and work with us should attendance become a concern.
93% or below is deemed to be a cause for concern and this would account to 3 school weeks (14 days) missed in an academic year. This account to 70 hours or lost learning – a concerning amount of lost learning. To prevent your child from hitting this trigger, we will begin to discuss support and offer challenge when we see a dip in their attendance. This could be through your child’s form tutor; our pastoral team; or our attendance team/the Local Authority. As much as possible, we like to work preventatively in order to reduce the chances of attendance dropping below 90% and being classed as a Persistently Absent student. We are proactive in offering this support and challenge – please do not see it as a criticism of parenting styles or that there is a problem that can’t be resolved. We put in this challenge because we care and want your child to achieve their personal best and we know that great attendance is crucial for this to happen.
Research suggests that when attendance falls below 95% this can equate one grade below in each subject. Let’s work together, right from the start, to ensure this does not happen for your child.
Reporting an Absence
Any unplanned absence, such as illness or medical appointment, should be reported by 8am on the day of the absence (earlier if possible). This can be done by sending a message using the MyEd Absence link, sending an email to the student absence email or calling the attendance phoneline.
- 24-hour absence reporting line: 01484 868777 choose option 1 – Report Absence
Please detail the: Full name and year group, reason for absence (please be more descriptive that just too unwell or ill). This will need to be done for each day of absence. On day three of absence, medical evidence may be requested or a phone call from our attendance office could be completed to further authorize absence where attendance is a concern (below 93%). Where absence messages have not been received, parents/carers will be contacted by text in the first instance and any absence not accounted for will be unauthorised. Future absences, such as medical/dental appointments, weddings/funerals etc. can be reported in advance in the same way. Longer absences for term time holidays should follow the Leave of Absence process.
Illness (physical and mental health)
Absences of 1 or 2 days must be reported each morning via the absence procedures detailed later. On third day of absence (including where this goes over a weekend e.g., Thursday, Friday, Monday), absences will need to be discussed with our attendance team in order to be authorised further. Please do still report absence in the normal way, but a member of our team will get in touch to discuss the absence further. Medical evidence may be requested in order to authorised extended absences where attendance is becoming a concern.
We do not have a 48-hour rule for sickness or illness and so when students are well enough to be in school, we encourage them to attend. This could be later in the same day, should they be feeling better later in the day. If this is the case, they would need to sign in via our main reception on arrival to school. We ask for parents to work with us to ensure that students attend school even with minor illness. We aim to instil resilience in our students even on days where they are not feeling 100% but are deemed well enough to attend by parents/carers. We advise that students are treated at home in the morning with any pain relief and are sent into school. Should illness deteriorate in the daytime, students should present at first aid where they will be assessed and if necessary, school will contact home.
Mental health support is accessible in school and through a range of external agencies including school nurse. We ask that where students are struggling with attendance due to anxieties and mental health, that they work with our Student Support and Pastoral Team to access support with emotions. This support can only be offered in school, but should there be significant concerns, please get in touch with our attendance team who will signpost you to the relevant member of our Student Support and Pastoral team.
All students should aim for 100% each week. As a school we will reward and praise students, tutor groups and year groups for aiming for 100% each week. Where attendance drops below 95%, your child will begin to be monitored by their form tutor. If this then drops further below 93% our attendance team will begin to explore whether there are factors or barriers that are negatively impacting on attendance with a view to offering positive challenge and support where that is required.
Mr Lane is our full time Attendance Officer at Shelley College who works closely with your child’s form tutor, Student Manager and Senior Leadership Team to ensure all students are able to aim for 100% each week. Building a strong home / school partnership around attendance is crucial, particularly where there are barriers to achieving good attendance – please do not be surprised, offended or alarmed should a member of the attendance team talk to your child or you directly as parent/carer about attendance or punctuality. This is done proactively in order to help students to achieve their personal best through having an amazing attendance and punctuality record.
90% attendance means one day per fortnight, 4 weeks per year, and 100 hours of lost learning time
For further information about the below topics, please download our ‘Attendance Matters’ leaflet which goes into more detail about:
First Aid – What happens if your child is ill whilst in school
Medical appointments or extended absences due to illness
Leave of Absence in Term Time
Punctuality – Arriving to school and lessons on time