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School attendance and welfare

Support and Advice in Powys

Establishing good attendance patterns from an early age can help children later on in life.

Evidence suggests that pupils who attend school regularly and on time achieve better outcomes in their GCSE's, than those with poor attendance. Children who miss out on school, also miss out on social opportunities and access to universal services like careers guidance, health, play, sports, well-being and creative activities.

We know that children who miss even small amounts of education can fall behind very quickly, where regular lateness can cause disruption, anxiety, social issues, and academic problems.

All school age children should be at school, on time, every day when the school is open - unless the reason for absence is unavoidable. Schools have a legal duty to publish attendance figures and to promote attendance but equally parents also have a duty and legal responsibility to ensure that their children attend school on a regular basis. In addition, the Local Authority has a duty to promote and enforce attendance.

What can I do to make sure that my child attends school?

We understand that sometimes getting your children up and out on time every morning can be difficult, particularly if your child does not want to go - however every effort should be made to support attendance. You can do this by:

  1. Being aware of your school attendance policy and named contacts.
  2. Ensuring good term time routines, sleep hygiene is critical in supporting good attendance.
  3. Planning and preparing in advance for the day / week ahead.
  4. Being on time.
  5. Taking an interest in your child's education and creating a positive home learning culture, where education is valued.

What can I do to support my child if they are unhappy at school?

If you suspect your child is unhappy or missing school, early intervention is key. You should try the following:

  1. Talk to your child and identify what the issues are.
  2. Offer support to address these issues.
  3. Contact the school directly and request advice and support. Agree a plan of action with regular review dates.
  4. Make sure your child knows that you do not approve of them missing school for any reason but be alert to any perceived issues.
  5. If your child does miss school - contact the school directly and work with them to address the issues quickly.

What will the school do if my child has poor attendance?

  1. The school will work with you directly and maintain regular contact offering continued support, advice and guidance.
  2. The school will maintain an appropriate attendance register - absence may be authorised or unauthorised.
  3. The school may offer Multi Agency Team Support, via the CAF process and/or make direct referrals to other agencies and / or the Local Authority for further support advice and guidance.
  4. Unauthorised absence, which falls below 90% and does not improve will evoke a series of school-based actions; contacts, letters, and recorded Attendance Improvement Meetings (AIM). All Powys schools follow the LA "Attendance Pathway".
  5. If unauthorised absence persists and falls below the threshold (80 - 85%), the school may make a formal referral to the LA Education Welfare Service for further investigation.

Education Welfare Officers

All schools in Powys are served by a small team of Education Welfare Officers, who provide a link between the schools, education services, families, children and young people. The main task of an EWO is to encourage and improve whole school attendance, support individual pupils / families, and discharge the Local Authorities legal responsibilities. The EWS service can offer advice, guidance, support and signposting to other services, working closely with health services, careers, youth inclusion, police, and social services.

It is important to remember that if there are no valid reasons for non - attendance then there are a range of legal measures that may be implemented by the LA; this can include the issue of Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN's), Education Prosecutions, Education Supervision Orders and School Attendance orders.

For further information and advice please contact the EWS team via email on: education@powys.gov.uk

 

Contacts

  • Email: education@powys.gov.uk
  • Phone: 01597 826422
  • Address: Schools and Education Service, Powys County Hall, Spa Road East, Llandrindod Wells, Powys, LD1 5LG

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