Attendance & Punctuality
Orchard Park High School expects all students to have 100% attendance and firmly believes that all students benefit from outstanding school attendance, both academically and in terms of their preparedness for adult life.
Aims and objectives
We intend to establish systems and practices which will:
- Create an ethos in which excellent attendance is the norm
- Maintain a safe, secure environment for students and the curriculum that meets their needs, thereby positively encouraging attendance
- Raise student awareness of the importance of punctuality and uninterrupted attendance, and encourage students a sense of responsibility.
We expect that all students will have:
- 100% attendance
- 100% punctuality rate
- Attend school appropriately prepared for the day.
The legal framework
Regular school attendance of children of compulsory school age is the responsibility of the parent/carer and is a legal requirement in accordance with section 444 (1) of the Education Act 1996. Parents/Carers are committing an offence if they fail to comply with this legislation and legal action can be instigated.
Students who are absent from school for more than a day will have their progress significantly affected. If your child is unable to attend school as a result of illness, parents/carers are asked to contact the school on each day of absence via the school’s main telephone number 020 8776 0220 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The school will contact you by email, telephone or text if we do not receive a message regarding your child's absence. Students must bring a dated parent/carer’s note when they return. In the case of prolonged absence (i.e. more than two days) parents/carers should keep the school informed as to when their child will return. Medical evidence must be provided.
If your child has a medical appointment, please provide a note in advance asking for them to be excused. We ask that parents/carers try to make appointments after school so that students do not miss lessons. Students leaving school must sign out at the office, showing their note, and sign back in upon their return.
Absences that the school is unable to authorise include:
- Holidays during term time.
- Arrival after the register has closed, i.e. 9.30am onwards.
- Shopping trips, even if this is for school uniform.
- Looking after a relative/pets.
- Tiredness due to extra-curricular activities.
- Taking siblings to school.
- Students taken out of school to translate.
It is the school's policy not to authorise absence during term time for holidays and any absence of this nature will be recorded as unauthorised and result in a penalty notice or prosecution issued in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1966 and the Education and Inspection Act 2006. The fine from September 2012 will be £60 if paid within 21 days of receipt of the Penalty Notice, increasing to £120 if paid after this date, but within 28 days. This is a very serious matter.
Parents/carers may write to the Headteacher requesting leave of absence during term time, but such requests are unlikely to be authorised.
Morning registration/line up is 8.20am to 8.30am. Registers are closed at 9.30am.
Students are expected to be at line up by 8:25am. If a student arrives late to registration/line up (after 8.25am), they must 'sign in' at the Welfare Office and a late stamp will be put in their journal; their form tutor will be made aware and they will sit a detention that same evening.
If a student arrives late to registration, a detention will be issued for one hour for that day, after school. Where appropriate, reasons for lateness are investigated and responded to in the appropriate manner. Lateness after registration closes is recorded as an unauthorised absence and is notified to parents/carers via the 'First Day Absence Call' service. If a student persistently fails to arrive on time, the detention will be raised to 90 minutes for every subsequent late without a legitimate note. Persistent lateness may incur a £60 penalty notice.
Register checks and penalty notices
The school's Attendance Officer checks our registers daily and pursues unexplained or repeated absences. Parents/carers must contact school on the first day if their child is going to be absent from school. The school will conduct home visits where it deems appropriate to ensure that children are safe and to enforce that they should be attending school.
There is a direct link between strong school attendance and high achievement.
The school's attendance and punctuality policy can be downloaded from our policies page here.