Attendance and Punctuality
Attendance at school
At Sarah Bonnell School we have excellent attendance that soars well above the national level for girls. Notwithstanding, we constantly work to ensure that our attendance figures continue to improve over time – an aim which is clearly communicated to all members of the school community. Attendance targets are agreed annually with the Local Governing Body, with the process then managed by the School Leadership Team. Regular school attendance is essential for all of our students to make good progress, achieve their academic potential and consequently have better chances in life.
There is a direct link between attendance and achievement. Absence is proven to have a significantly negative impact upon a child’s educational attainment; research also shows that the better a student’s attendance, the better their academic results will be. Regular attendance matters!
We don’t want your daughter to fall behind in school and get discouraged so please ensure that she attends school every day and arrives on time. Here are a few practical tips to help support regular attendance:
- Talk to your daughter about the importance of attending school regularly.
- Avoid scheduling family trips or doctor appointments during school hours.
- Make sure your daughter stays healthy by eating nutritious food and getting enough sleep and exercise.
- Don’t accept excuses for why your daughter “must” miss or be late for school.
- Discuss with your daughter what happened at school each day.
- Lead by example: if your daughter sees parents taking time off from work for no real reason, they may expect to be able to behave in the same way.
We hope that you appreciate how crucial good school attendance is to your daughter’s progress, achievement and chances in life and we look forward to working with you to ensure that your daughter’s attendance is the very best it can be.
The Sarah Bonnell Way helps set clear expectations around attendance and behaviour at school; our Home School Partnership provides further details as to how students, parents/carers and school work together to ensure that our girls are able to excel in all areas of school life.
Supporting good attendance
Students with excellent attendance and punctuality, receive recognition for excellence via the award of certificates, positive postcards home and are entered into the weekly SB Club 100 prize draw.
The Sarah Bonnell Way and the Home School Partnership ensure that we all work together to ensure that our students’ attendance at school is good. Close monitoring ensures that should additional intervention be deemed helpful, referrals can be made.
Referrals can be made both internally and to external agencies to address any issues that may be affecting a student’s attendance, e.g. Newham Attendance Service, the school’s Counselling Service, Child and Family Consultation Service (CFCS), Newham Asian Women’s Project (NAWP), and Newham Young Carers Project. Referrals are managed by the relevant staff who support the student and involve parents/carers as appropriate.
Absence from school
If a student is absent from school, parents must inform the school either by telephone or via the app in use for this purpose on the first morning of the absence and on each subsequent day of absence. On her return, your daughter should show her tutor any proof of absence, even if you have left a message. If you do not inform the school of your daughter’s absence you will be sent a notification via the GO4schools app which identifies any student who has not registered that day.
We have a dedicated absence line where parents can leave messages regarding their daughter’s absence. Parents should call the school number (020 8534 6791) and select option 1 to leave a message with their daughter’s full name, tutor group and detailed reason for absence (reasons such as “sick” or “unwell” are not considered a detailed reason, parents should state the exact nature of the illness, such as tonsillitis, chicken pox, asthma attack etc.).
Application for exceptional/term time leave
If you believe there are exceptional circumstances to take your daughter out of school during term time, you may apply for ‘exceptional leave’ by completing this form. The granting of any such leave is at the sole discretion of the Headteacher, who will review the form. We endeavour to respond to all requests within two school days.
Change of Contact Details
To ensure that we work together to safeguard our students, parents/carers are asked to let the school know immediately (and in writing – which may be via email to info account – firstname.lastname@example.org) of any change of home address, telephone number, places of work and emergency contact information.
Attendance regulations – Newham
Here are some facts you need to know if you live in Newham and have children of compulsory school age. Newham Council wants to support you to ensure that your children gain the maximum benefit from their education. A good education leads to better life chances, better employment opportunities and higher earning power. It helps children learn to socialise, to be confident and to be good citizens who make a positive contribution to society.
Further information is available on the School Attendance Page of the Newham website. The points below outline the key regulations around school attendance.
- Full-time education is compulsory for all children between the ages of 5 – 18 years
- Newham Council’s policy is for all children to start school in September of the year in which they turn five years old.
- If you apply for a school place but do not accept it, you will be asked what arrangements you are making to ensure your child receives full-time education, suitable to his/her age, ability and any special educational needs he/she may have.
- If you home educate your child, the Newham Council will check that the education you are providing is suitable.
- If you enrol your child at an independent or faith school, please notify the Attendance
- Service (contact details below), otherwise your child may be notified as a ‘Child Missing from Education’ (CME). This would involve checks being conducted to ensure your child is receiving an education.
- Once you have accepted a school place, it is your responsibility to make sure your child attends every day, on time, with no unnecessary days off. Parents can be prosecuted if they do not fulfil this responsibility.
- Term time leave is not authorised.
- Penalty Notice fines can be issued for taking your child out of school in term time, or for reasons related to non-attendance or poor punctuality.
- A Penalty Notice incurs a fine of £60 to each parent for each child, if paid within 21 days. If not paid within 21 days but paid within 28 days it rises to £120. If not paid at all, prosecution is automatic.
If you are new to the country we welcome you. If you want to learn or improve your English, enquire at your child’s school and you will be given information about local classes.
We expect all students to arrive to school on time. Students arriving late must sign in at Student Services. Students who are late will be given a detention a 20 minute detention as a consequence.
Please note that Newham is also able to provide information in a number of languages – please check the Newham website.