Melior Community Academy believes that excellent attendance and punctuality is the key for our students’ success. It is the foundation upon which the academy and home can work together. Therefore, we must ensure that attendance and punctuality are the highest they possibly can be in order to prepare our students for their future adult life. We request support from parents in order to keep absenteeism and lateness to an absolute minimum.
At Melior Community Academy we strive for every student to attain 100% attendance. From September, in line with the Government and Local Authority Guidelines, we expect all our students to achieve a minimum of 97% attendance.
What is good attendance?
Attendance percentages are not like examination results: an attendance percentage needs to be in the high nineties before it can be considered good. Students are rewarded for good attendance and their rewards can be tracked through Class charts.
Each year, a number of students in every year group achieve 100% attendance records, showing that this is an achievable target. In addition, a number of students have achieved this level of attendance in successive years.
All Students are expected to arrive on time at the Academy, ready for the start of Lesson 1 at 8.25am.
If your child is absent please contact the school as soon as possible on the first day of absence on 01724 868666 or you can leave us a message on our answerphone.
If we do not hear from you and your child is not in school, then we will call you. This system is for your child’s safety and your peace of mind.
Students who arrive to school late must sign in at our Main Reception and will receive a late mark on their attendance record and may receive a C4 Late detention.
Why is good attendance important?
Good attendance at school is vital for pupils to achieve their full educational potential. Pupils with good attendance records benefit in the following ways: –
- Continuity of learning which makes progress and retention easier
- Improved performance in coursework tasks
- Enhanced performance in examinations
- Continuity of relationships and friendships
- Good references for further education or employment
- Good habits are formed for later life
What can parents do to support their child to achieve good attendance levels?
Parents play a very important role in ensuring the good attendance records of their children. Below is a list of suggested strategies: –
- Encourage full attendance.
- Stress the importance of full attendance to your child.
- Do not allow your child to have time off for minor complaints or illnesses: if they are well enough to be up and about they are generally well enough to attend the academy.
- Monitor your child’s attendance.
- Take any vacations in academy holidays, not during term time.
- Try to book any medical or dental appointments out of academy hours or make them towards the very end of the academy day. Please note the academy will not authorise all day absence for medical appointments.
- Ensure your child is punctual to the Academy
Attending school regularly
Students with good attendance:
- achieve better
- feel happier and gain confidence
- find it easier to make and keep friends
- have better prospects of employment and training
- are less likely to be at risk of harm or be involved in criminal offending.
We can help
If you are concerned about your child’s school attendance it is always best to talk to us first. The academy has a dedicated Education Welfare Officer Ms N Quickenden or our Student Services Manager Mrs J Whitby within our student services team.
If you feel unable to do this or would like further help contact the North Lincolnshire service on 01724 297502 . They are open during school holidays.
Only the academy can authorise an absence. An explanation given by a parent is not, necessarily, sufficient for the academy to authorise an absence.
According to guidelines to schools from the Department for Education and Science, an absence may only be authorised if the absence is due to: –
- Pupil illness, though we may require medical evidence to support such an absence.
- “Leave” given by the academy (this commonly includes medical appointments, interviews, and other similar special circumstances) However medical appointment should be made out of academy hours whenever possible. Please note the academy will not authorise an all-day absence for medical appointments. Evidence of medical appointments/Interviews will need to be supplied to the academy.
- The pupil being unable to attend due to unavoidable causes – authorised at the discretion of the academy.
- Religious observance where applicable.
Absences which the academy is not able to authorise include: –
- Looking after a relative, pet etc.
- A shopping trip.
- Day trips
- Lateness after the register has closed.
- Being unable to participate in an academy activity e.g. Games or a school trip.
- Remaining at home to wait for deliveries, repairmen etc.
What can I do if my child starts missing school?
Children can show their worries and concerns in a number of different ways e.g. a reluctance to go to school, feigning illness, failure to attend school even though the child is sent, missing lessons whilst in school. If a problem seems to be emerging parents should: –
- Talk to the child to try to ascertain if there are any problems or worries at the academy, on the journey to or from the academy or at home.
- Contact the academy as soon as possible-the Attendance Team can be contacted throughout the academy day on 01724 868666 or via email – firstname.lastname@example.org They will be happy to help you and your child with any concerns you may have around attendance.
Holidays in Term Time
Any absence, including absence for holidays, interrupts the continuity of student’s learning. Parents/carers are strongly urged not to take students out of school for holidays during term time. Government Legislation now states that holidays during term time cannot be authorised except in exceptional circumstances. Please refer to the Attendance Information for parents/carers
What are the Penalties?
If an Education Penalty Notice is issued the penalty is £60 per parent per child when the payment is made within 21 days. If payment is not made within 21 days the penalty amount will double to £120 per parent per child and must be paid by the 28th day of issue.
Failure to pay within 28 days will result in a summons to appear before the Magistrates Court on the grounds that you have failed to secure your child’s regular attendance at School. If the case progresses to Court you may receive a Fine of up to £1000.
A student becomes a Persistent Absentee when they miss 10% of their schooling across the academic year for whatever reason. Absence at this level is doing considerable damage to any child’s educational prospects and we need parents’/carers’ full support and co-operation to tackle this.
Statutory Requirements, the Law and the Local Authority
Registers are legal documents; regulatory requirements placed on schools regarding the keeping of registers are to be found in the Education (Pupil Registration) Regulations 2006.
Section 7 of the Education Act 1996 states that parents/carers are responsible to ensure their child receives a suitable education.
Under section 444 of the Education Act 1996, a parent who fails to ensure their child attends the school at which they are registered, is guilty of an offence.
The Academy works together with the Local Authority to ensure that parents/carers fulfil their responsibility. There are a range of legal sanctions that may be imposed for dealing with unauthorised absence: Education Penalty Notices, Parenting Contracts and Orders, Education Supervision Orders or referral to the Magistrates Court which can recommend fines (up to £2500) or up to 3 months in prison.