Any difficulties in attending school should be discussed with Mrs Shelly Smith, our Attendance Officer - email email@example.com or call 01285 653447. Mrs Smith can liaise with our Pastoral and Welfare teams and with our Inclusion unit to ensure all the necessary support can be put in place to help pupils attend school regularly.
If your child is at home as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19), please clarify this when notifying us of their absence.
At Deer Park we recognise that regular attendance at school is the most critical factor in ensuring academic attainment and progress. We have a clear expectation that pupils should attend 100% of the time.
The school day starts at 8.50 with tutor registration. It is important that all pupils are punctual for this first session of the day as our tutors greet the pupils, ensure they are ready for their learning, give out important notices and take the legal register. Our tutors are the first point of contact for parents and pupils for any academic or social concerns. We do understand that sometimes absences from school are unavoidable, especially in the case of serious illness or injury, sudden and unavoidable change in family circumstance or bereavement. In such cases parents should contact the school on the first day of absence to explain the situation. Parents/carers should phone in on each day of an absence (unless the child is in hospital). An accumulation of unauthorised absences will be referred to the local authority.
There are 190 school days per year and 175 other days for holidays, birthday treats and non urgent appointments. The school cannot authorise any holidays during term time. Any significant periods of unexplained or unauthorised absences could be referred to the local authority who may take legal action against parents who fail to ensure their children attend school regularly. Gloucestershire County Council - Leaflet for Parents.
Following changes to government standards any pupil whose attendance falls below 90% will be considered a “Persistent Absentee”. This means they are at serious risk of failing to make the progress expected of them and could seriously limit their academic success.
If you are in any doubt about whether to send your child in to school, the NHS: Is my child too ill for school? online guide is a handy reference to help you decide. The default position should always be to send your child in unless, for example, they have a temperature or a diarrhoea/vomiting bug (i.e. more than a single incident of illness). We want to help avoid broken weeks.
As we raise the profile of the importance of good attendance across the school, we also offer all pupils access to a diverse network of professionals who can support individuals with specific issues relating to their attendance. Pupils can speak with their tutor; their Year Leader; the Attendance and Support Officer; the Team Leader and the Assistant Pastoral Team Leader; members of the Welfare team, as well as the School Nurse.
We have a Breakfast Club at school, through the Pastoral team, as we aim to reinforce the importance, not merely of attendance generally, but punctual, consistent, timely attendance, preparing all our pupils for life, further study and employment beyond school.