Kitwell Primary School

Where children are at the heart of everything we do

Contact

Wychbury Road, Birmingham
West Midlands, B32 4DL
(Sat Nav Postcode B32 4DJ)

0121 476 0694

enquiry@kitwell.bham.sch.uk

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Dear Mums, Dads and carers of Kitwell Children,

I have worked at Kitwell for over 25 years and both my daughters attended the school so I fully understand the importance of punctuality and attending school every day. I am now supporting parents that were pupils at Kitwell themselves.  I live local so I know the Kitwell community very well.

My role as Attendance Manager is to:

  • Offer support to parents and families to ensure that their children are in school on time and every day.
  • Suggest strategies and a plan of action to encourage children to attend school.
  • To achieve the Government’s attendance target of 96%.
  • To ensure that where possible medical appointments are made before or after school.
  • Reduce the number of holidays in term time.
  • To promote the importance of regular and punctual attendance and to advise parents of the consequences of this not happening.

 

The ‘Odd Day Off’ Attitude

Some parents feel that the ‘odd day off’ as a treat for a birthday or day out really doesn’t matter. After all they are ‘only in Primary school - it’s not that important’. Parental attitudes like this can be extremely difficult to change. One day off means they may miss the beginning of a new topic or a special treat that is happening in school.

  • ALL members of the class suffer if children have the odd day off as the teacher has to spend time helping the child catch up.
  • Children miss out on the social side of school life particularly at the start of the new school year. 

Absence disrupts the education of the individual pupil and the whole class. Are you aware that children who do not attend regularly:

  • do not achieve well in exams
  • find it difficult to maintain friendships
  • are more likely to become involved in crime
  • miss out on opportunities in further education and the world of work?

 

How does your child compare?

Attendance during one school year

equals this number of days absent

which is approximately this many weeks absent

which means this number of lessons missed

95%

9 days

2 weeks

50 lessons

90%

19 days

4 weeks

100 lessons

85%

29 days

6 weeks

150 lessons

80%

38 days

8 weeks

200 lessons

 

Please remember that parental illness, going shopping, visiting family, truancy, not wanting to go to school, alleged bullying (speak to school immediately to resolve the issue) are not acceptable reasons to be absent. All of these will be recorded as unauthorised absence, including if your child arrives at school after the close of registration.

Family emergencies 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. Being at school with support from staff and peers can provide children with stability. The routine of school offers a safe and familiar background during times of uncertainty.

 It is a parent’s legal responsibility to ensure their children receive appropriate education. 

Failing to send your child to school regularly without good reason is a criminal offence.  

Legal action that may be taken includes:

 Issuing penalty notices: Each parent receives a penalty notice for each child who has unauthorised absence. The penalty is £60 or £120 depending on how soon payment is made.  So, if there are two parents and two children the total penalties could be up to £480. Failure to pay may result in prosecution.

 Taking parents to court for unauthorised absence: Education Act 1996 Section 444(1) - court can fine each parent up to £1000 per child, order payment of prosecution costs and/or impose a Parenting Order.

 Taking parents to court for persistent unauthorised absence: Education Act 1996 Section 444(1A) - court can fine each parent up to £2,500 per child, order payment of the prosecution costs, impose a Parenting Order and/or sentence you to a period of imprisonment of up to 3 months.

 Being taken to court could result in you having a criminal record.

Frequent absence can add up to a considerable amount of lost learning and can seriously disadvantage your child in adult life. 

 If your child’s level of absence is of serious concern, the school will offer advice and support to improve attendance.  After this, any unauthorised absence may result in the School and the Local Authority taking legal action. 

 Lateness

Lateness impacts on a child’s opportunities to learn.  If you have your English and Maths sessions at the start of the day, pupils arriving late and missing part or all of these sessions will be severely disadvantaged. You would feel embarrassment when you arrive late when everyone is sat down working and you have to slip in at the back without bringing attention to yourselves, try to get up to speed with what is being said, try to piece together what has been said already, and then imagine how your child feels having to do that when they arrive late at school.

Parents have a legal responsibility to send their children to school on time if they are registered pupils at the school. If they do not, there can be legal consequences.

 

At Kitwell School we are committed to improve attendance as this will have an impact on your child’s attainment.  We suggest you think about:

  • Bedtime routines – packing school bag ready for the next day, getting to bed earlier, setting a time for a television in the bedroom to be turned off.
  • Morning routines – setting the alarm earlier, set time for a little lie-in, no television until ready for school (and maybe not even then), having breakfast before leaving home, so no need to call in at the shop, meeting a reliable friend to walk to school with.
  • coming to school for breakfast club if available.
  • Finding out if parents would lose their job if they were late once a week.
  • Pupils should establish good punctuality habits while they are young.

Registration

  • If your child arrives after 9.00am they must go to the school office to register their child this will generate a late mark.( ‘L’) Code
  • If your child arrives after registration they will get a (‘U’) Code.
  • ‘O’ Codes – are generated when a parent does not ring school by 9.30am to inform why the child is absent. If 20 ‘O’ or ‘U’ codes are generated this leads to a fine as they are classed as unauthorised absences.

The quality of teaching and learning judgement relates to attendance because, however good the teaching, it does not benefit pupils if they are not present.