Attendance Information Letters
If your child is absent, please ensure it is for a genuine illness or emergency only. Please phone the school’s attendance office every day of absence, to notify school of the absence explaining the reason and length of absence expected. Please let school know by 8.00am. The number is 0161 338 2374.
Please make all medical or dental appointments after school where possible. If an appointment during school time is unavoidable, please send the appointment card into school with your child. If your child is absent for 3 days or more, or if you have received an attendance letter from school requesting medical evidence for absences, we kindly ask that you provide some form of medical evidence in order for us to authorise the absence (copy of doctor’s appointment card, copy of a prescription, doctor’s letter, etc.). Students should return to school as soon as possible after their period of illness.
Attendance and Punctuality
Great Attendance = Great Achievement! There is a link between good attendance and high achievement. Students who have excellent attendance (97% or above) are more likely to succeed at school. That’s why, at Rayner Stephens High School, we encourage all of our students to aim for 100% attendance; anything less than 97% is no longer good attendance.
Frequent absences, can really add up and be harmful to your child’s progress at school:
Persistent Absence: A student is deemed to be “Persistently Absent” if they have attendance below 90%.
Families are advised where possible to make medical and dental appointments outside of the school day. Where this is not possible, for pre-planned appointments, parents / carers should get school’s agreement in advance by contacting the Attendance Officer. Students should only be out of school for the minimum amount of time necessary for the appointment. Families must show the appointment card to school. If a student is absent for a full day to attend a medical appointment then the student may incur half a day unauthorised absence.
Legally, the parents of a student with attendance below 90% could be prosecuted under the Education Act (1996). The Borough Solicitor may consider an offence under section 444(1) of the Education Act 1996 which carries a maximum fine of £1000. If the Borough Solicitor determines that there is sufficient evidence to prosecute you for an offence under section 444(1a) of the Education Act 1996 for knowingly allowing your child to fail to regularly attend school, this would carry a sentence of a maximum 3 months imprisonment and/or a fine of £2,500. If a child has 10 or more sessions of unauthorised absence over a twelve week period, parents could also be issued with a Penalty Notice Fine of up to £120 per parent.
Holidays in Term Time:
Legislation states that “The Head Teacher may not grant any leave of absence unless there are exceptional circumstances”. Family holidays no longer constitute exceptional circumstances and consequently will not be authorised. Parents/carers must apply to the Head Teacher in writing if they wish their child to have a leave of absence in term time, detailing when the absence will take place and the exceptional circumstances behind the absence. Parents who take their child out of school in term time without the permission of the Head Teacher will be issued with a Penalty Notice fine of up to £120 per child.
All students must be in school for 8.40am. If a student arrives late they will be issued with a late detention at break. If a student arrives late after the close of registration on two or more occasions within a five-day period they may be placed in Internal Exclusion during their social times.
Our Attendance Officer may contact students having issues with their attendance. Their role is to assist students and families in overcoming any barriers that are stopping your child from attending school regularly. If a student’s attendance does not improve to the required level after support has been put in place you risk prosecution for persistent absence.