Regular attendance is vital to provide continuity in a child’s learning, however we understand that absences will occasionally be inevitable, particularly if children are unwell or there are unexpected family circumstances. If for any reason your child is unable to attend school, please telephone the school office by 9.15 a.m. on the first day of absence to let us know the reason. We need to account for every absence on the day, therefore a telephone call or personal visit is needed. A follow up call is then required on each continued day of absence.
When a child is absent parents need to inform the office as soon as possible on that day, so that, for safety reasons, the school is aware of the reason for that child not being in school.
If the illness is a contagious disease, notify the school immediately. Children should be kept at home until they have fully recovered from their illness. If a child is required to leave school during the day for a medical or other appointment, please notify the teacher or office. We reserve the right not to hand the child over to an unknown adult.
Should circumstances arise where a parent/carer feels it is necessary to request leave for holiday, then a letter detailing the circumstances should be sent to the Head teacher for consideration.
Not more than ten days leave of absence, for exceptional circumstances, may be granted for pupils in any calendar year and permission is given by the Headteacher and Governors. In line with all schools in the Thanet area, annual holiday does not constitute exceptional circumstances and taking holiday in term time may result in a Penalty Notice fixed rate fine. Term dates are published well in advance to try and avoid this, as holiday during term time does have a negative effect on your child’s education. The school works closely with the Local Authority Educational Welfare Officer to monitor absence and offer guidance and support both to the school and parents.
Herne Bay and Whitstable schools operate a policy of requesting penalty notices when a child accrues 10 or more unauthorised absences (1 day is equal to 2 absences) during a school term. The request for such a notice may also occur where a child is removed from school for a holiday without prior authorisation. In both of the above cases the school is required to refer the matter to the Attendance and Behaviour Service who may issue a Penalty Notice for £120.00 (or £60.00 if paid within 28 days), to each parent for each child taken out of school.
The school is compelled to keep a record of all absences, authorised and unauthorised, and these are published every year in your child’s annual report.