At Ynysowen we want the best for all the children in our care and we would therefore like to remind you of the importance of good attendance at school.
Good attendance is seen by Welsh Government as above 95% and we expect this to be the minimum level for all children at Ynysowen.
Last year our whole school target was 95%. Unfortunately, we didn’t achieve this, only managing 92.6%.
As a school, we are open for 190 days a year; this leaves 175 days for holidays, rest and non-urgent appointments.
The importance of regular attendance
There are many good reasons for encouraging regular school attendance which has been well researched and documented.
For pupils the benefits include:
Research shows a close link between attendance at school and a child's achievement. Being late adds up to a loss of learning.
|Minutes late per day||Equivalent of missing|
|5 minutes||3.4 school days a year|
|10 minutes||6.9 school days a year|
|15 minutes||10.3 school days a year|
|20 minutes||13.8 school days a year|
|30 minutes||20.7 school days a year|
Where a pupil is absent due to sickness and is genuinely unable to attend school, then the school, after being informed, may authorise a child's absence.
It is important to inform us at the start of the day if your child is going to be absent by using the school’s messaging service. In law only a headteacher can authorise a pupil's absence, and sometimes, this may require additional evidence such as a letter from your GP.
The law states that parent/carer(s) must ensure that their child regularly attends the school where they are registered. With this in mind, the school governors have agreed that from September ALL holiday absences will be unauthorised. This means that any child who is taken out of school during term time to go on holiday will receive an unauthorised absence, unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Actions due to poor attendance
Regular attendance is required by law and Welsh Government introduced Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) and fines for parents who have children with more than 5 days/10 sessions of unauthorised absence. This can be issued for any absences not authorised by the school, including holidays. Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council will issue these notices when concerns are raised by school. The fine is £120 unless paid within 28 days when it will reduce to £60.
Fixed Penalty Notices may be considered appropriate
Incentives for good attendance
To promote good attendance in school we offer our pupils a number of incentives such as:
We actively promote the benefits of good attendance to all pupils through circle time activities, assemblies, by staff simply talking to pupils and through the work of our ‘Attendance Advocates’ responsibility club members.
We all need to work together to raise levels of attendance at school and I hope that you will support us in our drive to increase the attendance of all children at Ynysowen.