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At our school we believe that excellent attendance can be achieved when staff, parents and children work together in partnership. We work with a variety of outside agencies to ensure children receive their educational entitlement, offer families support and meet our attendance targets.

School Attendance
A very important message for parents and carers from
Birmingham City Council and Mrs. Ridley.

September 2021

Grendon Primary School is working in partnership with parents and Birmingham City Council to ensure all children return to school following a difficult previous year. We would like to thank parents for the work you have done in ensuring your children received education during that time.

It is now vital for all children to return to school to minimise, as far as possible, the longer-term impact of the pandemic on their education, wellbeing and wider development. We also know that when not in school, children missed being with their friends and the wider social aspects of school.

Missing out on more time in the classroom risks pupils falling further behind. Those with higher overall absence tend to achieve less well in both primary and secondary school. Therefore, the government has confirmed that school attendance continues to be compulsory.

This means that (unless parents are formally notified of new lockdown arrangements where schools are closed or a child is required to self-isolate), the usual rules on school attendance apply, including:

  • parents' duty to send their child/children to school regularly where they are of compulsory school age;
  • schools' responsibilities to record attendance and follow up absence
  • the option for local authorities to again consider the use of legal sanctions, including penalty notices and prosecution in court.

If you are worried about your child/children attending school the first port of call is to discuss your concerns with the school directly. the school has specialist staff who,may be able to help, and all schools work closely with health and council teams who may also be able to help if needed.

Please note that, given the disruption to children's education caused by the pandemic, requests for leave during term time are unlikely to be authorised by the Head Teacher.

Family emergencies also need careful consideration. It is not always appropriate or in the best interests of the child to miss school for emergencies which are being dealt with by adult family members.

No school or local authority wants to take legal action. Every attempt to resolve parents' concerns and improve a child's attendance will be made before any formal legal action, which may include a penalty notice or court action, is instigated.

However, where all efforts fail and parents fail to ensure their child attends school regularly, legal action may be considered.

After so much disruption to children's education over the past year, the most important thing is that the school and parents work together to get children back into school. The school is ready to listens please contact them if you have any worries and they will try to help you. there is also information for parents and carers on attending school during the pandemic that can be found HERE.

Additionally, Birmingham City Council provides online information and guidance to parents on school attendance which you can access HERE.

We wish you and your child/children all the best for the new academic year,

Education Legal Intervention Team (Birmingham City Council)
Mrs. H. Ridley

This letter can also be found as a PDF below

Missing out on time in the classroom risks pupils falling behind. Those with higher overall absence tend to achieve less well in both primary and secondary school.

This means that we follow guidance on school attendance, including:

  • Ensuring parent’s meet their duty to send their child/children to school regularly where they are of compulsory school age.
  • Ensuring school is responsible for recording attendance and following up absences or punctuality concerns.
  • Recognising the local authorities may consider the use of legal sanctions, including penalty notices and prosecution in court.

If you have any concerns that are preventing your child/ children attending school, please talk to us. We Can listen and help you.  Our school has specialist staff who may be able to help, and all schools work closely with lots of agencies who are able to offer advice and support.

Please be aware that requests for leave during term are unlikely to be agreed. We ask you to think very carefully about taking your children out of school during term time and the impact this will have on their learning. Any requests MUST be made in writing with adequate notice and allow time for school to hold any meetings with you.

We also ask that families explore every available option before removing children for “family emergencies” so that children are still able to attend.

Please make sure you bring your children to school on time so they can enter with their class. We will talk to families whose children are regularly being brought in late to school and address any concerns.

School uses the Local Authority Fast Track process to raise awareness of the importance of attendance and address attendance concerns. We do not want to refer our families to the Local Authority for legal action, and we will attempt to resolve any concerns you may have before we make the decision to do this. We want to work with you.

What can I do to help my child attend school?

  • Establish good routines about bedtime - children need sleep so that they can learn. 
  • Make sure their uniform is ready for them to wear. 
  • Make sure any Book Bags, PE Kits, Homework are ready to bring in.  
  • Make every effort to ensure children attend school every day that it is open and on time.
  • Be in their lines waiting to start school at 8.55am. 
  • Bring your child to collect a ‘Late Slip’ from the School Office if they arrive after 9.00am and provide a reason for lateness. 
  • Tell us by phone or writing about any absences relating to illness. 
  • Provide medical evidence when school requests it. 
  • Notify school of absence by 9.30am giving a reason for absence.
  • Not take children out of school during term time for holidays 
  • Make an appointment to discuss any concerns with staff and give school the opportunity to resolve anything you are concerned about.
  • Try and make medical appointments like Dentists/ GP’s out of school time. 
  • Work with school to access support from specialist services regarding your child’s health/well-being. 

What do I do if my child is unwell and can not come to school?

Please phone school and provide a reason for absence by 9.30 on the day of their absence.

If your child has a medical condition you will need to inform the School Office.

If your child requires medicine during the school day please complete a medical form at the School Office.  All medicines must be clearly labelled with the child's name and instructions for administering.

We follow guidance from the Health Protection Agency regarding childhood illnesses. We will share relevant information and guidance with you when we need to.

If you feel you need help with an ongoing health issue our School Nurse can help you. Please click this link for details.

What if I would like to take my child out of school during term time?

We strongly advise you against taking your children out of school during term time. Headteachers may no longer authorise leave during term time except where there are exceptional circumstances.

This is what you must do:

  • The Parent/Carer of the child must write to the Head Teacher requesting leave (as a parent the child normally lives with) stating the reason and length of time in school days. 
  • Attend a meeting and provide any travel documentation /paperwork relating to the leave. 

It’s up to the head teacher how many days your child can be away from school if leave is granted.

You can be fined for taking your child on holiday during term time without the school’s permission.

Does it matter if my child misses a day at school?

Children are required to attend school for 190 days each year. Even relatively few absences mean they miss a lot of lessons.

Attendance during one school year Equals days absent Which is approximately weeks absent Which means this number of lessons missed
95% 9 2 50
90% 19 4 100
85% 29 6 150
80% 38 8 200
75% 48 10 250
70% 57 11.5 290
65% 67 13.5 340

Please remember that children who miss a lot of school achieve less. How does your child's attendance compare with this figure?

How do you decide who goes on the Attendance Reward Trip?

The Cinema Trip to is a reward for good attendance and to encourage other children to do better with their attendance.

This trip is run three times a year providing everybody with the opportunity to go. 

This term we are only taking children with no more than 2 absences between September and the end of term (December). 

Children who are regularly late will not be allowed to go. 

I have a question or concern about Attendance. Who do I contact?

Miss Jones is our Pastoral Manager, she works with children and families to ensure regular attendance at school. Miss Jones works closely with lots of agencies and can also offer you advice and support. Please contact the office to arrange an appointment.