Attendance & Punctuality

Regular and continuous attendance is vital to the education of all students, and is a key factor for future achievement. Only illness can be regarded as a totally satisfactory reason for absence.  Students should make every effort to get to school, and we assume that parents will encourage them to do so. Attendance figures are noted on school reports and comments on attendance given by the school in references to employers and colleges.

Parents’ Annual Holiday – Term Time

The Government states that any attendance level below 95% is unsatisfactory. Any absence from school, other than planned educational activities, will affect a young person’s academic achievement, which will in turn have a negative effect on life-chances. Whenever we look at students who are failing to achieve their potential and are falling behind, there is always a link with poor attendance. Once students have fallen behind, catching up can be very difficult and sometimes impossible, particularly in the early years of school when the children are learning to read, write and understand the basic rules of mathematics. Absence in later years of education always affects exam results and can cause problems with references for colleges, universities, employers etc.

Parents are legally obliged to ensure that their children attend school regularly and on time and schools are obliged to do all they can to ensure that happens. We have a duty to inform you that from September 2013, the Law relating to school attendance gets much tougher and the amendment to the 2006 Regulations state;

“Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances”.

Attendance at Ferndown Upper School is carefully monitored.  In addition to the statutory attendance registers, the school checks attendance in every lesson, and also holds regular random checks. On the few occasions where there is a problem, appropriate sanctions are applied.  Parents are always involved at this stage or whenever there is concern from the school.

Late arrival at school counts as “unauthorised absence” and is treated as such.  Any student who does arrive late (for whatever reason) must sign the “Late Arrival” book, which will be found in the Pastoral Office

Students who have an urgent reason for leaving school during a working session, such as a medical appointment, should apply to the Head of House for the appropriate permission to leave and support their request with a parent’s letter or official appointment card.

Absence Notes

It is most important that parents should send a short note to their child’s tutor giving reasons for absence, on the first occasion when a student returns to school.  If it is apparent, however, that the absence is likely to last more than a few days, parents are asked to contact the school as soon as possible.  In the cases of prolonged absence for illness, it is possible for suitable work to be supplied if circumstances permit, or, in extreme cases, for limited home tuition to be arranged.  Only the school can approve absence.  The existence of a parental note does not, in itself, justify an absence. Students who are absent from school are expected to make up any work missed in their own time.

Attendance Policy