Attendance and Punctuality
At Thomas Bewick School, we recognise the importance of our pupils attending school on a daily basis, not only in raising their attainment but also on their sense of wellbeing and community. We are very mindful, that due to the complex needs of our pupils, there are many factors which may affect a pupil’s attendance. Due to this, we have developed an ethos which considers each pupil’s and families individual circumstances, ensuring that we provide the strategies and support which encourage a positive attitude of regular and punctual attendance. We aim to ensure that all pupils attend school regularly and on time to enable them to take full advantage of the educational opportunities available.
At Thomas Bewick School we aspire to:
- Improve the overall attendance of pupils at school
- Support each pupil’s holistic development and attainment through good attendance
- Encourage parents/carers to ensure that pupils attend school regularly and arrive at school on time
- To make attendance a priority for all those associated with the school including parents, pupils, teachers and governors
How Thomas Bewick will help if your child is persistently absent or late
At Thomas Bewick School, we want our pupils to access the high quality, bespoke education that they deserve and to enable them to do that, we need them to attend school regularly and on time. It is our duty of care to monitor attendance and punctuality and if your child’s attendance or punctuality becomes a concern, we will offer support in the following ways:
- 90% and below - Safe and well checks by staff in school and support strategies offered.
- 85% and below - Invitation to attend an Attendance Review Meeting to offer further support to improve your child’s attendance/ punctuality.
- 80% and below—Support offered through the Early Help Assessment team led by staff in school.
- If attendance continues to fall despite the above support, advice from the Access and Inclusion team would be sought from school staff to offer local authority support to the family.
How do you report your child’s absence?
If a child is absent, parents/carers should contact the school on the first day of absence before 9.10am to inform the school of the reason for absence. Please leave a voicemail if there is no answer.0191 229 6020 (Option 1 - Broadwood Site, Option 2 - Site 1, Option 3 - Site 2)
What can I expect from school?
Parents/carers are expected to maintain contact with the school throughout the absence.
If you do not keep in contact or provide a reason for your child’s absence we will contact you throughout your child’s absence as part of our safe and well check procedure:
Day 1 - a member of our admin team will make contact with you.
Day 3 - your child’s teacher will make contact with you to offer support.
Day 5 - your child’s phase leader will make contact with you to offer further support.
Day 7 - a member of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) will make contact with you to make plans around your child returning to school and signpost to external support services where appropriate.
Holidays during term time at Thomas Bewick School
We kindly ask that parents do adhere to our policy and avoid taking holidays during term time. We acknowledge the complex needs of our pupils and that there may be exceptional circumstances where families cannot avoid taking a trip during term time.
Holiday request forms are available from the school office. Any leave of absence is at the discretion of the Headteacher and must be made in writing at least two weeks prior to the holiday date. Parents/carers will receive a written letter stating whether the absence is agreed or not, along with the reason for the agreement or refusal. The Headteacher may contact parents to discuss the reasons for the application.
We encourage parents/carers to avoid making routine medical appointments and dental appointments during the school day, as far as is possible. Where this is not possible, the pupil should be out of school for the minimum amount of time necessary. At Thomas Bewick School we will authorise an allowance of time for the medical appointment and a reasonable amount of time for travel to and from the appointment.
We are very mindful that there can be a lot of reasons why punctuality may be affected at Thomas Bewick School and we are here to support you and work with each family individually. Through doing this we strive to ensure our pupils arrive at school on time each day.
If a pupil arrives late to school every day, their routine is disrupted which can then lead to emotional regulation difficulties which directly impacts their ability to engage in their curriculum at school and can affect their regulation and routines at home.
Below is a graph showing how being late to school every day over a school year adds up to lost time: