Fareham Academy is committed to providing a full and dynamic education to all students and embraces the concept of equal opportunities for all. We provide an environment where all students feel valued and welcome. For a child to reach their full educational achievement, a high level of Academy attendance is essential. We will consistently work towards a goal of 100% attendance for all students. Every opportunity will be used to convey to students and their parents or carers the importance of regular and punctual attendance.
Academy attendance is subject to various education laws and this Academy Attendance Policy is written to reflect these laws and the guidance produced by the Department for Education.
Each year, the Academy will examine its attendance figures and set attendance/absence targets. The Academy will review its systems for improving attendance at regular intervals to ensure that it is achieving its set goals. This policy will contain within it the procedures that the Academy will use to meet its attendance targets.
Any child who is absent from the Academy at the morning or afternoon registration period must have their absence recorded as being authorised, unauthorised or as an approved educational activity (attendance out of Academy). Only the Headteacher or a member of staff acting on their behalf can authorise absence. If there is no known reason for the absence at registration, then the absence must be recorded in the first instance as unauthorised. Providing parental contact with Academy is made via telephone, letter or email and if staff or the Headteacher feel that the absence is acceptable, the attendance code will be changed to authorised. This will be followed up by a first day phone call from the Attendance Officer.
First Day & Continuing Absence
Parents should contact the Academy by telephone by 8:30am on 01329 318003 and select the Student Absence Line (Option 1). The Academy will contact parents by text message if 'unauthorised' has been recorded. Information for registers is processed by the Attendance Officer, Year Leader and Tutor.
It is the responsibility of the Attendance Officer to be aware of and bring attention to, any emerging attendance concerns. In cases where a student begins to develop a pattern of absences, the Academy will try to resolve the problem with the parent(s)/carer(s) of a student. In the first instance, an attendance alert letter will be sent to parent(s)/carer(s) outlining the Academy’s concerns of absence and offer support if needed. The attendance will be closely monitored by the attendance support team and where a sustained and significant improvement is not made, a red attendance letter will be sent inviting parent(s)/carer(s) in to meet with the Year Leader and member of the attendance support team to discuss effective strategies in order to improve the student’s attendance. If there is still no significant improvement made, the case will be submitted to the Governor’s Attendance Review Meeting. A red Governors attendance letter will be issued detailing the review meeting and inviting the student and their parent(s)/carer(s) to attend.
Notes from parents explaining absences should be kept for the remainder of the academic year. If there are attendance concerns about the student that may require further investigation, then the notes may need to be retained for a longer period. We encourage parents to write letter or notes on paper rather than student planners.
Holidays in Term Time
In line with the amendments made to the 2006 regulations in the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013, the Headteacher may only grant leave of absence during term time in exceptional circumstances. For unauthorised holidays, the Academy may issue a Fixed Penalty Notice to each parent/carer who fails to ensure the regular and punctual attendance of their child at school. This currently stands at £60 if paid within 21 days of receipt of the penalty notice. If not paid within 21 days, the penalty is automatically increased to £120 if paid within 28 days. This is in line with the guidelines set out in the Hampshire County Council code of conduct for issuing penalty notices in Respect of Unauthorised Absence from Schools.
The Academy will use the following system to reward students who have good or improving attendance;
100% attendance certificate signed by the Headteacher
100% attendance letter home from the Headteacher or Year Leader
Every effort must be made by parents to arrange medical appointments outside of Academy hours and the parents must provide a note from the medical organisation to cover the appointment. Only in exceptional circumstances can whole days be authorised for medical appointments. The student is expected to attend the Academy where possible, either side of the appointment, in order to minimise absence from lessons. For students who have returned to the Academy after a prolonged absence, they may be put on a support programme. This is intended to ensure a positive re-integration of the student into the Academy and to support them while catching up on academic studies in subject areas. This is instigated by Data Management when a student returns after approximately one week of the absence and consists of a schedule of meetings between Tutor and students and agreed targets. This information is logged and placed on the student’s file at the end of the programme. Significant improvements and high levels of attendance are reinforced by Year Leaders. It is essential that a subject register is taken electronically every lesson and should be taken at the start of the lesson. This will ensure that the Academy is able to monitor and reduce truancy from lessons.
At Fareham Academy, the expectation is that all students arrive in their tutor room to be registered by 8.30am. Students arriving late are asked to sign in at reception. If the reason given for lateness is not acceptable, students will receive a late mark and be issued with a social detention at break and lunchtime each day that they sign in late – unless the Academy has been notified by parents they are attending an appointment. Students sit these social detentions on the same day that they sign in late.
Tutors are responsible for detentions. Tutors will be responsible for checking on a daily basis those students who are due to have a detention with them that day. If the student does not turn up for their detention, they will be escalated to a 60 minute detention and the Tutor would need to discuss this with the parents.
Year 11 students are advised that punctuality and attendance will directly impact on whether they are given the privilege to attend the Academy's Prom.
Students who are persistently late will be contacted by the Attendance Support Team. An initial letter will offer support to parent(s)/carer(s) and students to ensure that the student's punctuality can improve. If sustained improvement is not made to the student's punctuality, parent(s)/carers(s) will be invited in to meet with the Year Leader and the Attendance Officer.
The Academy may issue a Fixed Penalty Notice to each parent/carer who fails to ensure the regular and punctual attendance of their child at school. This currently stands at £60 if paid within 21 days of receipt of the penalty notice. If not paid within 21 days, the penalty is automatically increased to £120 if paid within 28 days.
The level of absence that is necessary before a Penalty Notice can be issued, in any circumstance, is 10 or more half day sessions. This is the equivalent of 5 school days of unauthorised absence during any 10 school week period.
The Academy works within the guidelines set out in the Hampshire County Council Code of Conduct for Issuing Penalty Notices in Respect of Unauthorised Absence from Schools. Please refer to appendix 1 in the Behavior Policy for the penalty notices process.