New attendance arrangements for school
The government have introduced new legislation on attendance which is more rigorous than the previous arrangements. This means that the school “may not allow any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances”. Most requests for approval of leave of absence during term time, then, will not be authorised – this would include cheaper term-time holidays.
The new law will also soon require the local authority to impose fines on parents who take their children out of school in order to take a holiday. The school is not taking that step at the moment, however, we may be instructed to in the future. The local authority are expected to impose fines on the parents of children with poor attendance (less than 92%) if they take holidays in term time. A Rotherham-wide policy is still being formulated and we will update you once we have further details. The definition of ‘exceptional circumstances’ will be defined in this policy.
If you have already submitted a leave of absence form this year, we will not be authorising absence because of this new ruling. I restate that there are no plans to fine parents for unauthorised absences at this stage. In this, we’re taking the same action as other Rotherham schools.
In order to ensure the best attendance for all our children this year, if your child’s attendance over time is a particular concern, we will be contacting you to help improve attendance in the next half-term. Those children whose attendance was ‘of concern’ last year will have their attendance monitored more closely this half term. In this way, we hope to ensure that all our children are in school and learning for the maximum amount of time. We will also continue to present certificates to congratulate the attendance achievements and efforts of children with 100% attendance.
We hope that you recognise these new arrangements as positive steps to ensure every child receives their full entitlement to education.
Mrs M Crawford
|DfE Letter Regarding Holidays Dec 2013||[pdf 318KB]|
|Leave Of Absence Request Form||[doc 654KB]|