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Regular and punctual school attendance is paramount at Burnside School. Pupils who attend school everyday take full advantage of the provision that we offer and the educational opportunities offered to them by law. Our responsibility is to ensure pupils are in school and on time,  having access to learning for the maximum number of days and hours.

Our policy applies to all children registered at this school and this policy is made available to all parents/carers of pupils who are registered at our school on our school website under 'policies'. This policy has been written to adhere to the relevant Children Acts, Education Acts, Regulations and Guidance from the Department for Education in addition to guidance from the Local Authority.

Although parents/carers have the legal responsibility for ensuring their child’s good attendance, the Headteacher and Governors at our school work together with other professionals and agencies to ensure that all pupils are encouraged and supported to develop good attendance habits. Procedures in this policy are followed to ensure this happens.

Students who are persistently late or absent soon fall behind with their learning. Students who are absent from school frequently develop large gaps in their learning which impact on their progress and their ability to meet age related learning expectations. A student whose attendance drops to 90% each year will, over their time at secondary school, have missed two whole terms of learning.

We celebrate good or better attendance in a number of ways. This includes, celebrations in assembly, praise and certificates and displays around the school.

Addressing Attendance Concerns                     

The Hawkswood Group has a clear attendance policy in place, which outlines the Hawkswood Attendance Stages (HAS). Attendance is closely tracked and any concerns are reported to the Behaviour, Attendance and Children Missing Education Service (BACME).

The school has high expectations that all students attend well.

It is the responsibility of the Headteacher and the governors to support good attendance and to identify and address attendance concerns promptly.  Initially concerns about attendance are raised with parents via letters which are sent home. There are opportunities for the parent/carer to discuss reasons for absence and support to be given by the school with the aim of improving attendance. Where a student’s attendance does not improve over a period of time then the school has a responsibility to make a referral to the Educational Welfare Service.

The Behaviour, Attendance and Children Missing Education Service will issue penalty notices to parents where there has been a referral to BACME from the school as part of the school’s processes to address poor attendance patterns.