Attendance Guidance & absence arrangements
Attendance at school is very important for all students and we ask that you support us by ensuring your child comes to school everyday on time and ready to learn.
Please contact the school immediately if your child is going to be absent and make follow-up emails/calls if required. Email firstname.lastname@example.org We would prefer an email but you can also ring our Student Absence Line which has an answerphone on 01454 862518.
For Sixth Form students, please call 01454 862150. There is an answerphone available for you to leave a message so that you can call out of school hours.
We would request that parents make these emails/calls, not students and that you leave the name and tutor group of your son/daughter along with a brief message relating to the reason for their absence, this allows us to efficiently update our Attendance System.
We have an automatic first day call system which will call the parents of students who are absent from school that morning with no reason given. It is important that if students are late they register with their tutor or after 8:50am at Student Services or Reception.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) There is a really helpful website from the NHS that can help support you if you are unsure whether to send your child into school. Is my child too ill for school?
The attendance target for every student in the Castle School is 97%. Excellent attendance is intrinsically linked to academic achievement and progress. Students who have regular absence, patterns of unauthorised absence, broken weeks of attendance and high levels of absence for minor illness are unlikely to achieve their academic potential.
Most students reach or exceed this target. We’ve even had some students go 5 years without a single absence! However remember an attendance record of 90% means one day off every fortnight over the year, or 6 months off over five years. It’s surprising how it adds up!
The Castle School prioritises the monitoring, support and robust action needed to secure high levels of attendance and works in close partnership with the Local Authority to place matters before the court in circumstances where parents/carers do not ensure that their child attends school regularly and punctually. The following Attendance Phases are a guide for students and parents on the steps that the school will take to support the regular attendance of students at school. At every stage of our Attendance Phases we welcome the opportunity to engage with parents and carers. Early intervention and student support sits at the heart of our approach to raising levels of student attendance.
If you would like to discuss any issues regarding attendance/absence or have any questions or queries about our attendance system please call Deputy Head - Mr Haines
Please click on the links below to view Government information;
Request for Absence of School Student
The Department of Education regulations governing requests for absence in term time is that holiday during term time will not be granted. Other absences will only be granted in exceptional circumstances. Further guidance on these regulations can be accessed at;
Parents and carers will be aware that Headteachers are not allowed to authorise absences during school term-time, unless there is an exceptional circumstance. This is because, when students miss any number of lessons, they can be left with gaps in their learning which they will find it extremely hard to fill. For younger children, this can have a significant impact on their acquisition of basic skills in reading, writing and maths. For older children, absences can seriously impact their grasp of basic learning blocks, or even exam topics. Such absences can also affect other children in the class, where teachers are having to take time to go back over missed learning.
If you are planning a holiday during term-time, you must complete a form requesting permission for exceptional leave of absence for your child. You will be informed whether or not it has been authorised by the headteacher.
If your child has unauthorised absences from school for more than 10 sessions (5 days) in any seven week period, you will receive a fixed penalty notice from the Local Authority. Each parent with parental responsibility will be fined £60 for each child with unauthorised absences. Eg: If parents take two children out of school, the fine is likely to be £240. These fines double if they are not paid within a specified timeframe.
We know that fines for term-time holidays are not popular. However, they reflect the fact that children’s education and achievements can be seriously negatively impacted by missing school for avoidable reasons. We really appreciate parents’ support in organising holidays during the school holiday period.
The form should be returned to Student Centre at least 7 days before the start of the absence. Please return the whole form, do not detach the slip, one form should be completed for each child involved in the requested absence.