At Witchampton Cof E First School, all the pupils, parents and staff know how important good attendance is for children’s well-being and progress. Please see the link for our full attendance policy at the bottom of this page.
Gates open at 8.45 a.m and the School day starts at 8.55am and ends at 3.05 p.m for Hedgehogs, 3.10 p.m for Badgers and 3.15pm for Foxes.
In order to help the teachers and teaching assistants with seeing the children out of school safely, we ask parents to let us know who will regularly be collecting their child/ren. This means that as long as the person collecting the child/ren are on the list, parents do not have to call the school to advise who is collecting their child/ren. Without this information only parents will be allowed to collect their own child/ren.
If there are any changes to collection arrangements, it is the parents' responsibility to inform the school.
What to do when your child is absent from school?
• Telephone the school office (preferably before 8.45 am), phone number 01258 840684 on the first day of absence to explain the reason why your child is away from school.
• If your child is absent for more than one day, please keep the school informed every day during your child’s absence. If no contact is received by the school by 9.00 a.m, a phone call will be made to the primary contact detailed on the pupil's files. If no contact can be made by 9.30 a.m the school will take very reasonable step to satisfy themselves that the pupil is safe. The school should be satisfied with every absent child by 10.00 a.m at the latest.
• If your child has a medical or dental appointment please try to make them out of school hours if possible. If they are in school hours please bring in their appointment card or letter so that we can put a copy in their file.
When will absences not be authorised?
• The school will not authorise absence for any of the following reasons: holidays, shopping, looking after other members of the family, minding the house, birthdays or similar events.
Gates open at 8.45 a.m and close at 8.55 a.m when the register is taken. Lateness beyond 9.05am is recorded as unauthorised absence on our records. We monitor carefully pupils who arrive late for school and work with parents and carers to improve punctuality.
Why good attendance is important?
In recent years much research has been carried out on the effect that poor attendance can have on children’s progress at school and how well they achieve in life.
Children who do not attend school regularly often have the following problems:
• They are not able to keep up with their work
• It is difficult, in a busy school day, for teachers to find the time to help your child catch up
• Children who arrive late miss important parts of the lesson and disrupt the learning of other children in the class
This is why good attendance a priority for our school. By improving our attendance rates, we will improve the standards that our children achieve and provide them with better chances in life. We can only do this with your full support.
How parents and carers can help:
• Work together with us
• Send your child to school every day, on time, unless they are genuinely ill - if your child is well enough to return to school by lunchtime, send them into school
• Avoid taking your child out of school for holidays
Family holidays during term time:
The school does not authorise absence for family holidays during the school term unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Parents and carers who choose to take their child out of school for holidays should be aware that such absence will be recorded as ‘unauthorised’ on the child’s record. Parents and carers who choose to take their child out of school for holidays should be aware that such absence will be recorded as ‘unauthorised’ on the child’s record and may be subject to a fixed penalty notice. This is a fine, issued by the local authority, at £60 per pupil, per parent.
What will happen if my child is often absent from school?
• The school monitors the attendance of all children
• If your child’s attendance falls below 95%, we will contact you to discuss the situation
• If absence continues, you will be invited to discuss the reasons for your child’s absence.
• If necessary, a referral will be made to the Attendance Service, so that the absence can be further investigated.
What happens when my child is ill?
• There may be times when your child has to miss school because he, or she, is ill
• You should always contact the school on the first day of absence to let the teacher know that your child is unwell
It is important to let the school know if your child has ongoing health problems so that the right support can be put in place.