Attendance and Punctuality at Brompton Hall School
As a school we acknowledge the importance of attendance and punctuality and are committed to ensure that we encourage, monitor and maintain a high percentage of pupil attendance. In addition, the majority of our pupils are transported in County transport and as such, punctuality is predominantly dependent on the efficiency of this service. We aim to work collaboratively with the Local Authority school transport department and the parents / carers of our pupils in order to achieve high levels of attendance and punctuality.
The Headteacher is responsible for the implementation of the policy and relevant procedures, reporting on a termly basis to the Governing Body. The Headteacher monitors the attendance of all pupils and where appropriate rewards good attendance and instigates procedures to deal with poor attendance and punctuality. The Headteacher will make the final decision on whether an absence is to be authorised or not, based on individual circumstances. The Headteacher (or another designated member of the Senior Management Team) will liaise regularly with the Placement Support Officer (PSO).
Placement Support Officer (PSO)
They are responsible for telephoning parents / carers on the first day of absence if no explanation for this has been received. Once a reason for absence has been received they will update the SIMS attendance record with the reasons for the absence.
If any notes / letters are received about a pupil’s absence, staff should complete the ‘Pupil Absence’ section of the SIMS, and the note scanned onto Sharepoint.
• Before a pupil is accepted on to the school roll, parents / carers are informed of the importance of high attendance and given information about the school’s procedures for rewarding good attendance and action that will be taken for poor attendance
• They are requested to notify the school immediately if their child is unable to attend. This may be by telephone, letter or via the bus / taxi escort.
• In line with government directives, children should not be taken out of school during school time for a family holiday unless there are very exceptional circumstances. Parents / carers should request such leave in writing to the Headteacher.
• Parents / carers should ensure that their child is in school unless there is a genuine reason otherwise.
Staff within the classrooms are responsible for the completion of the electronic attendance registers at the commencement of each morning and afternoon session. They are responsible for marking whether pupils are ‘Present’ or ‘Absent’. Class tutors and keyworkers regularly discuss the importance of regular attendance with their groups, this is usually done during daily handover sessions and follow up meetings.
The school office has an answer phone option on its main telephone line on which parents / carers can leave a message about their child’s absence. The administration team have the following responsibilities, reporting any issues or concerns immediately to the Headteacher for action:
• Check the answerphone for messages
• Check the electronic registers daily
• Monitor absence and check return dates
• Check the circumstances of any absence with class staff, if a reason has not already been given
• Input absences using specific codes (appendix 1)
• Update records on SIMS
• Liaise with the Placement Support Officer, Headteacher and Child Protection Coordinator as necessary
• Refer any pupils with an absence before or after a holiday break to the Headteacher
• Update guidance for staff regarding completion of registers
• Provide statistics for Headteacher teacher and Governors
• Input statistics for the yearly census returns.
• Complete L.A. returns half termly for pupils with a long term absence.
• Inform SMT immediately of the non-attendance of targeted pupils
• Inform SMT if any pupils are absent for more than 5 days
Designated Safeguarding Lead
The Designated Safeguarding Lead is responsible for monitoring the attendance of any pupils who are subject to a CAF, a Child Protection Plan or for who there are other welfare concerns.
Looked After Children (LAC) Designated Teacher
The LAC Designated Teacher is responsible for reporting the attendance of all Looked After pupils which is monitored carefully by the virtual school teams for the individual Local Authorities.
Rewarding Pupil Attendance
Individual termly attendance is celebrated at the end of the term, for the previous term. Headteacher certificates are given to those pupils who achieved 100% attendance for the term and termly attendance is celebrated in the termly newsletter.
Pupils with Poor Attendance
When a pupil’s attendance becomes a concern the Headteacher will ensure the following actions are instigated;
• If a pupil’s attendance falls to below 90% over a term without extenuating circumstances (e.g. hospitalisation), SMT and the PSO will liaise and decide whether a letter should be sent to the parents raising their concerns.
• If a pupil’s attendance falls to below 85% over a term, without extenuating circumstances, they will be part of a target group and will be monitored by SMT and the PSO closely
• The member of staff assisting with the morning bus reception will be responsible for highlighting the absence of any of this target group immediately to SMT.
• If there are a number of unauthorised absences, the PSO will make a home visit to offer the family appropriate advice and support
• For some identified targeted pupils, the PSO will be contacted as soon as a concern arises and the PSO will make a home visit
Monitoring and Evaluation
The Governors monitor the attendance on a termly and annual basis, which includes the school’s overall authorised and unauthorised absence figures. Individual attendance figures are published on pupils’ Annual Review documentation and bi-annual reports to parents / carers. As part of our drive to improve attendance across the school we work closely with our Placement Support Officer to monitor individual pupils’ attendance.
Lateness is recorded on the SIMS data system which is shared with parents and carers as and when required. Long Term Absences Returns are sent in to the Local Authority on a half termly basis reporting any long term absences, along with what action is being taken to resolve this and any alternative provision that is in place.
Pupils on Roll but Educated Elsewhere
In some situations, pupils on roll at Brompton Hall may be receiving their education elsewhere, whether on a short or long term basis. In these circumstances the administration staff will check the pupils’ attendance on a weekly basis. Some pupils may attend off-site provision on some days. In these circumstances the school administration staff will telephone the provider to attendance for each session.
Pupils Leaving the School
When any pupil of school age leaves Brompton Hall, the Headteacher will ensure that the receiving school (if known) is contacted to confirm that the pupil has been registered on their roll. In the event that any pupil leaves Brompton Hall and we do not know which school they are going to register with, the Headteacher teacher has the duty of care and responsibility to inform the Children and Young Peoples Services of the family’s movements. In addition to other stakeholders, who will liaise with the Headteacher teacher in updating their “Children Missing from Education” database.
For further guidance and specific details, refer to the Children and Young People’s Services protocol document (November 2009) “Children Missing in Education”.
Appendix 1: Attendance Codes
Appendix 2: Prevent Referral re: Attendance
In cases where a child’s attendance falls below 90% in a term, the Placement Support Officer will contact the family via telephone and letter and discuss how the attendance can be increased. The Prevention Service is part of Children and Families Services and will provide support to get the child back into school. Consent from the child’s parent/carer needs be obtained for the referral to be made. If consent is not obtained but there are concerns around the child’s welfare, the PSO will liaise with the Designated Safeguarding Lead and the Senior Management Team to decide if a referral to Children and Families Services is required. Children and Families Services will look at the referral and decide what the best support is for the family. This could include working with the family on a Child Protection Plan, Child in Need Plan or referring it into Prevention.
The Prevention Team will work with the family for a period of time until improvements are made. They will have regular contact with the parent/carer and young person. They will also support the parent/carer through the attendance process if required. If no improvement is made, then the Prevention Team will look to see if the case needs transferring to Children and Families Services to get a higher level of support for the young person and their parent/carer.
This service is only open to students who have no involvement with Children and Families Services. If a Student has a current social worker and is either on a Child Protection Plan or a Child in Need Plan, then the PSO will work closely with the Social Worker to get the child back into school.