Why is attendance important?

Research proves that regular school attendance is the key to enabling your child to get the most out of the educational opportunities available to him/her. This allows them to become adults who are:

  • Emotionally sound
  • Confident
  • Competent
  • Able to realise their full potential
  • Able to make a positive contribution to their community.

St Bernard’s values all pupils. As set out in our full attendance policy, we will work with families to identify the reasons for poor attendance and try to resolve any difficulties.

Please ask at the school office for a copy of the full policy if you would like to find out more about the work done in school to improve attendance

Attendance and the Law

How does the law affect me?

Section 7 of the 1996 Education Act states that parents must ensure that children of compulsory school age receive efficient full-time education suitable to their age, ability and aptitude to any special educational needs that they may have, either by regular attendance at school or otherwise.

Parents who do not adhere to the law on attendance may be fined by the Local Authority (Manchester City Council) under The Anti Social Behaviour Act 2003 or even taken to court and prosecuted.

How does the law affect school?

The Local Authority has a statutory responsibility to ensure that parents secure education for children of compulsory school age and where necessary, use legal enforcement.

The school is required by law to take a register twice a day which records whether any absence is authorised or unauthorised. Only the school can authorise absences, the parents cannot.

We ask you, the parents for as much information as possible to help us to do this accurately. There are some rules we ask you to follow for this reason.

What will school do to help improve my child’s attendance?

Pupils’ attendance levels are banded into colour codes as follows:

GREEN pupils with attendance between 100% and 98%

YELLOW pupils with attendance between 94% and 97.9%

ORANGE pupils with attendance between 90% and 93.9%

RED pupils with attendance of 89.9% and below

Both the Local Authority and Ofsted expect school to have an action plan for any child in the RED banding. These children are called Persistently Absent. The school is measured and judged on the number of Persistent Absences.

You will receive a letter if your child becomes Persistently Absent. This will tell you what action the school is taking. Parents may be required to attend a meeting so that we can support you to improve.

Penalty fines may also apply.

We encourage children to attend every day by using class competitions and rewards for excellent attendance.

Our aim is to work closely with families to improve attendance. We can provide help through our Pastoral Team, our school nurse and the class teacher.