SCOIL BHRÍDE’S VISION AND VALUES IN RELATION TO ATTENDANCE

The staff of Scoil Bhríde aim to promote the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the person of the pupil: intellectual, social, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual. We believe that in order for pupils to reach their full potential in these areas they must attend school punctually each day. We recognise the importance of having in place strategies to both encourage pupils to attend school and to reward them for their attendance.

 

SCOIL BHRÍDE’S HIGH EXPECTATIONS AROUND ATTENDANCE

The staff of Scoil Bhríde is committed to achieving high levels of attendance as we understand that it is an important part of our school ethos and school policy.  We have high expectations that every pupil will attend school each day and we communicate these expectations to pupils and parents/guardians regularly and in a variety of ways.  

However, if a child is unwell and unlikely to last the duration of the school day or if other children are at risk of infection from this child, parents are advised to keep this child out of school.

 

MONITORING ATTENDANCE

Class teachers record attendance on Aladdin every day. This attendance data will be used by the class teachers

  • to monitor overall attendance and punctuality levels
  • to identify trends and patterns in attendance
  • to identify specific times of the school year or week when attendance levels are low
  • to monitor the attendance of vulnerable groups or individuals
  • to track attendance for a specified period of time

 

THE MAIN ELEMENTS OF SCOIL BHRÍDE’S APPROACH TO ATTENDANCE

  • Attendance targets will be set following an analysis of available attendance data. Any evident patterns of non-attendance (e.g. taking children out of school for holidays in June, student absences on Monday/Friday), persistent lack of punctuality and poor attendance among particular pupils for no apparent reason will be targeted for improvement.
  • The staff of Scoil Bhríde aim to create a safe and welcoming environment for our pupils and their parents/guardians in order to encourage good attendance.
  • The school calendar for the coming year is made available (both in hard copy form and on the school website) to parents/guardians before the end of the current school year. This will enable parents/guardians to schedule holidays and appointments on non-school days.
  • The importance of the child’s attendance at school and of the social and academic consequences of his/her poor attendance is emphasised by the school principal at the introductory meeting for parents/guardians of new entrants to the school, which is held each year.
  • Each year parents/guardians are notified in writing of the following matters regarding attendance:

* The legal obligations imposed on schools regarding the reporting of non-attendance i.e. absences of 20 or more days will be reported to NEWB.

*The opinion of educators that taking children out of school to go on holidays during term time should be avoided as it inhibits educational progress.

*The fact that parents may be contacted by the school (even before the child has reached 20 days absence) if the child’s attendance is of concern and to ascertain if further support is needed.

*The obligation on a parent to inform the school of the reason for his/her child’s absence from school for part of a day, a whole day or several days.

*The time of the day the roll is taken after which the child is marked absent / late.

  • Class teachers call the roll and record attendance on Aladdin no later than 9.40 am each day.
  • Class teachers record pupils’ early leaving from school and late arrival to school on Aladdin.
  • The parents/guardians of a child leaving school before 1.20 (Infants/Cuisle) or 2.20 (all others) are required to sign their child out of school in a book which is located near the main door of the Infants/Cuisle building or in the secretary’s office of the Senior building.
  • Teachers communicate with parents/guardians at parent teacher meetings on the importance and value of good attendance and punctuality.
  • The amount of days missed up to the date of issue of the end of year report is reported to parents in the end of year report.
  • Rewards: Full attendance for three months is rewarded. Children who achieve full attendance for three months receive a certificate and one item of written homework off. These months do not have to be consecutive months and pupils are encouraged to get a second and a third certificate and to have full attendance if this is possible.
  • ‘Don’t let your child miss out’ (NEWB) – is made available to parents/guardians either in hard copy format or by means of a website link on the school’s website. This publication aims to make parents/guardians aware of their statutory duties outlined in the Education Welfare Act.

 

SCHOOL ROLES IN RELATION TO ATTENDANCE

All members of the school community have their part to play in ensuring that every pupil can get the benefits of good engagement with learning through being in school each day. Key roles include:

 

School Principal

  • Provides leadership for the creation of a school ethos and climate that is supportive of high levels of engagement and attendance;
  • Leads on the review and implementation of the School’s Attendance Strategy;
  • Puts arrangements in place for monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the school’s Attendance Strategy;
  • Provides opportunities for staff to engage actively with the development and monitoring of the school’s Attendance Strategy;
  • Initiates links with other schools and relevant bodies on school attendance issues;
  • Notifies Tusla’s Educational Welfare Services and the relevant EWO of particular problems in relation to attendance and ensures support for the work of the EWO with students who have chronic attendance difficulties;
  • Furnishes pertinent attendance documentation to officers of relevant government departments.

 

Teachers

  • Provide a classroom climate and classroom management that support participation and engagement, especially with pupils who may be at risk of poor attendance;
  • Actively use the school’s Attendance Strategy to promote attendance;
  • Set high expectations for punctuality and attendance in their classrooms;
  • Agree punctuality and attendance standards with pupils as part of classroom rules;
  • Set example by their own punctuality;
  • Ensure attendance data are recorded accurately and reviewed in line with school procedures;
  • Alert the principal if there are concerns about pupil absences;
  • Support the attendance plan for pupils who have difficulty in attending school on a regular basis;
  • Support pupils on return when they have missed periods of schooling.

 

Parents

  • Set high standards for their child in relation to attendance and punctuality;
  • Engage with the school if there is a problem about their child’s attendance and support plans to address the problem;
  • Ensure that their child regularly attends and arrives at school on time;
  • Avoid taking their child out of class unless there is a serious reason;
  • Avoid taking their child on holidays during term time;
  • Parents will be encouraged to bring their child back to school after appointments unless the treating physician/dentist advises otherwise.

 

PARTNERSHIP ARRANGEMENTS

  • A child’s name may only be removed from the school register where the principal of Scoil Bhríde has been informed by the principal of another school that the child has been enrolled in that school or where the principal of Scoil Bhríde has been notified by the Welfare Board that the child has been registered by it as in receipt of out-of-school education.
  • Where a child transfers to another school the principal of Scoil Bhríde will notify the principal of the child’s new school of any problems in relation to attendance. Likewise where a child transfers to Scoil Bhríde from another school, the principal of Scoil Bhríde will be informed of any problems in relation to the child’s attendance.
  • The calendar for the academic year will be planned in conjunction with CBS Boys Primary School to support attendance from families with children attending both of these local schools.

 

MONITORING THE STATEMENT OF STRATEGY OF ATTENDANCE

The Statement of Strategy of Attendance will be monitored in the following ways:

  • School staff will be provided with opportunities to share experiences about how the strategy is working and to review progress towards attendance targets.
  • There will be an update on attendance levels at each Board of Management meeting, with reference to the school’s attendance targets.
  • There will be a formal end-of-year review of the Statement of Strategy as part of the preparation of the Board of Management’s annual report on attendance (as per Section 21(6)(a)(b) of Education (Welfare) Act 2000) to Tusla’s Educational Welfare Services and the Parent Association.

 

RATIFICATION OF POLICY:

The Board of Management ratified this policy on 12th October 2017.

 

REVIEW OF POLICY

A review of this policy will take place annually. 

 

SUBMISSION OF POLICY TO TUSLA

This policy was submitted to Tusla on 28.11.2017

 

Signed:

 

 

 

Rev. John Ryan, Chairperson, Board of Management

 


 

 

Click on the link below for more information.

‘Don’t let your child miss out’ – School Attendance information for parents