Raise your child’s attendance – raise their chances!
At Long Field Spencer Academy excellent attendance and punctuality is our aim for every student. Full attendance maximises learning opportunities and parents and carers have a vital role in promoting good attitudes in attendance. Evidence shows that students who attend school regularly make better progress both academically and socially. We ask for support from parents and carers to:
- Ensure that their children are present at every opportunity
- Arrive on time
- Avoid allowing children to stay at home unnecessarily
- Avoid taking them out of school without authorisation
We monitor attendance closely and will follow up unexplained absence with parents and carers by telephone or by letter. The Department for Education’s threshold at which a student is defined as ‘persistently absent’ is 10% (down from 20% previously). Where a student’s attendance record reaches a concerning level, we will contact you to discuss ways in which the Academy can support you and your child.
What is good attendance?
We consider good attendance to be 97% and above.
Why is good attendance important?
- To make new friends
- To learn and enjoy new experiences
- To develop skills that you will need in later life
- To take part in a wide range of activities in and outside of Long Field
- To learn how to look after themselves and encourage independence
- To feel safe and listened to
- To improve their chances of having a good career or life chances
- To make a positive contribution to the Long Field community
How can a parent/carer help?
- Tell your child how important school is.
- Praise your child for working hard and attending school.
- Organise non-urgent medical appointments outside of school time.
- Check that you child is organised for school (with a bag to carry their things).
- Make sure your child has a good night’s sleep and wakes up in good time for the school day, arriving no later than by 8.35am.
- Take time to talk to your child about what they have done in school.
- Contact the school at the first opportunity if your child is genuinely ill or is unable to attend.
- Talk to someone at the school if there is a problem or reason why your child finds it difficult to attend regularly.
What to do if your child is ill
If your child is too ill to attend school, parents/carers should contact the Academy as soon as possible.
Please give your child’s name, House Group, the reason for the absence, and how long you expect the absence to last. We ask that you contact us each day that your child is absent unless you have given us an indication of how long the absence will last. On your child’s return following an absence, we request that parents/carers write a brief note explaining the absence. The student should hand the note in at reception.
What to do if your child has an appointment
We ask that, where possible, you make routine medical and other appointments out of school time. If this is not possible, we require notification in advance. Please telephone, email or provide a note from home or appointment letter/card to confirm the appointment. In most cases, your child should attend school before the appointment and return to the Academy afterwards wherever possible.
Automated messages to parents/carers
We take our safeguarding responsibility seriously. If the Academy has received no reason for absence and a student is absent from Period 1 (8.40 – 9.30) text messages are sent daily to the contact numbers of parents/carers. Texts are sent on a daily basis, even where your child has been absent due to illness on previous days. We cannot assume that your child is still ill unless you have notified us. We would not wish to put your child at risk by failing to contact you. Please ensure your child realises the importance of attending registration on time and getting their present mark. Parents/carers can also help by ensuring that we hold up to date contact details.
All students are expected to arrive to school on time and be ready and punctual to lessons. This is a minimum expectation. Students should arrive for 8.35 am for the five minute bell. Students are expected to be in Lesson 1 by 8.40 am ready to start learning. Any student arriving late must sign in at reception. After 8.40 am, students will be marked as late and will receive a 40 minute detention. We would be grateful for your support in ensuring that your child arrives on time.
Holidays in term time
From the 1st September 2013, the DFE issued guidelines giving no entitlement to parents to take their child on holiday in term time. Any application for leave must only be in exceptional circumstances and the Head Teacher must be satisfied that the circumstances are exceptional and warrant the granting of leave. Head Teachers would not be expected to class any term time holiday as exceptional.
Any period of leave taken without the agreement of the school, or in excess of that agreement, will be coded as unauthorised and may result in a Penalty Notice being issued to parents. Following the Supreme Court ruling on 6th April 2017 (Isle of Wight Case) the school will notify the Pupil Services Court Team at Leicestershire County Council of unauthorised leave of absence. If a child has unauthorised leave of absence a parent may be issued with a Penalty Notice of £120 per parent per child (discounted to £60 if paid within 21 days) or the case could be referred by the Local Authority directly to the Magistrates’ Court for the purposes of criminal prosecution.
Leave of absence for other reasons
Absence will not be authorised for reasons such as shopping for uniform, birthdays, day trips, etc. If parents/carers wish their child(ren) to be absent for other reasons, such as compassionate leave, special family events, or to participate in sporting or musical competitions etc, application should be made in writing to the Principal in advance.