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Attendance Strategy

Improving attendance is everybody’s business

Our Vision and Values

Growing happiness, healthiness and life-long success

In order for all pupils to realise the vision that we hold for their education, they need to be in school accessing a high-quality education at all times.

Our Meadow View values of Include, Aspire, Achieve and Wellness thread through everything we do at Meadow View Primary School, including pupil attendance. This supports us to build a culture that promotes the benefits of good attendance:

Include

Education development trust (2024) states that Learners’ sense of belonging in the school community can be a cause of absenteeism - if a learner does not feel that they belong within their school community, their risk of absence is higher. Everyone has the right to feel a sense of belonging at our school. We ensure that the school environment, curriculum and ethos are representative and inclusive of all pupils at Meadow View Primary School. Pupils who feel as though they belong, are more likely to want to attend.  We recognise that some pupils find it harder to attend school than others therefore all staff prioritise building positive relationships with all pupils and their families, proactively finding relational moments with an open heart ready to empathise, care and support.  The diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging team ensure that we know each and every pupil as individuals and remain professionally curious as to what the individual barriers our pupils and their families face regarding their attendance, providing the right support at the right time.

Aspire

We want all pupils at Meadow View Primary School to leave us with high aspirations for their future. Our curriculum and personal development strategy are built to develop this aspirational stance. An integral part of our attendance strategy aims to expose the positive impact that good attendance will have on the reality of them fulfilling their dreams.

Achieve

Good attendance is essential to ensure that pupils get the most out of their school experience, including attaining academically, achieving the personal development drivers of resilience, emotional literacy, communication, teamwork and independence; and developing good physical and mental health wellbeing approaches. Good attendance ultimately provides the pupils with the best possible outcomes and life chances. It is statistically clear that the pupils with the highest attainment at the end of Key Stage 2 have higher rates of attendance compared to those with the lowest attainment.

Wellness

We recognise that mental and physical wellness are significant drivers in school absence. We therefore ensure we prioritise these factors in both our school curriculum and responses to repeated absences. In order to ensure that children feel confident and safe in school we ensure the school is a calm, orderly, reliable and supportive environment for all pupils and their families.

The Law

The law in the UK entitles every child of compulsory school age to an efficient, full-time education suitable to their age, aptitude, and any special educational need they may have.

Where parents decide to have their child registered at school, they have an additional legal duty to ensure their child attends that school regularly. This means their child must attend every day that the school is open, except in a small number of allowable circumstances such as being too ill to attend or being given permission for an absence in advance from the school.

The Impact of Poor Attendance

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The Impact of Lateness

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Our School Approach

Our school approach is written in conjunction with the DFE ‘Working together to improve school attendance’. We work together with partners to ensure that we have the right culture in school to promote good attendance alongside the right support being offered at the right time to enable pupils to fully access education. 

We recognise that the barriers to accessing education are wide and complex and therefore remain professionally curious at all times, seeking to expose the barrier or barriers to school attendance. We build strong relationships with our families ensuring that they know we are a source of support at all times, we are approachable and that we genuinely want to achieve the very best for their children.

Below explains our school strategy:

Expect

  • Our school attendance policy sets out the clear expectations of the school with regard to parents. All staff are familiar with the policy and our expectations and the contents of the policy are communicated to parents and pupils in an appropriate way. 

  • School attendance expectations are set at admissions meetings.

  • Attendance expectations are reinforced at transition, key stage parent meetings.

  • Attendance forms part of parent meetings and our expectations are set out clearly.

  • All children engage in a class assembly each week which makes clear the expectations of attendance at school.

  • We have a colour coding system in school which is displayed in classes, the entrance hall and on newsletters so that stakeholders are clear of the level of attendance expected.

  • The impact of lateness posters are displayed in school.

  • Attendance data alongside our expectations are included on annual, formal school reports.

  • Attendance expectations are shared with governors within Head Teacher reports.

  • Class Teachers talk to their pupils about the importance of attendance regularly.

Monitor

  • Attendance is tracked on an individual basis. Any pupil who does not have attendance levels of 96% or more at the end of each half term is discussed by the attendance team and appropriate actions are agreed and tracked for impact.

  • Half termly letters are sent to families informing them of their child’s attendance level and where their child’s attendance falls in the colour coding system.

  • Pupils who end the year in the red category (Persistently Absent) will be become a ‘red’ focus family. These pupils’ attendance will be monitored more closely and these families will be prioritised for support.

  • Pupils whose attendance persistently sits between 90-96% but never meets the threshold of 96% become a purple focus family. These pupils’ attendance will be monitored more closely, including tracking reasons for absence, patterns in absence and frequency of absence. Alongside this, these families will be prioritised for support.

  • Pupils whose attendance repeatedly sits between 90-96% and only occasionally meets the threshold of 96% become a purple focus family. These pupils’ attendance will be monitored more closely including tracking reasons for absence, patterns in absence and frequency of absence. Alongside this, these families will be prioritised for support.

  • Attendance is tracked for vulnerable groups, so that the attendance team can monitor their levels of attendance and pursue enquiries and investigations for underperforming groups.

  • Attendance is tracked for year group cohorts, so that the attendance team can monitor their levels of attendance and pursue enquiries and investigations for underperforming cohorts.

  • Staff are professionally curious, looking for patterns of absence to highlight to the attendance team.

  • Lateness is monitored to identify families who are frequently late and may require additional support.

Listen and Understand

  • There is an attendance team made up of:

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Mrs Logan
Headteacher

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Mrs Morgan
 Inclusion and Safeguarding Officer

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Mrs Gregg
AHT Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

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Mrs Riley
Attendance Officer

  • When a pupil’s attendance is identified as a concern by the attendance team, our inclusion and safeguarding officer meets with parents in the first instance via telephone progressing to face to face meetings to explore the reasons for the concerning attendance. This provides information for the attendance team to reflect on to identify individual measures that can be taken.

  • When data is analysed and a vulnerable group is identified as having poor attendance, an enquiry will take place to elicit multiple views from this group so that the attendance team can reflect on these and look to take appropriate action.

Facilitate Support

  • As a school we continually look to employ supportive strategies and techniques to improve pupil attendance.

  • The strategies and techniques and increase or decrease in significance as the child or family needs more or less informal support.

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Tier 1 Support is open to all pupils in school

Tier 2 Support is used for groups of pupils

Tier 3 Support is used for individual pupils

  • Good communication with parents

  • Absence challenged at the point of absence

  • Lateness challenged at the point of lateness

  • Attendance Letters

  • Late Letters

  • Reminder texts

  • ISO Phone Calls

  • Attendance Meetings

  • Weekly Attendance Race

  • Annual Attendance Raffle

  • Attendance included at parents’ meetings

  • Attendance included on annual reports

  • School nurse available at parent meetings

  • Translated texts and emails

  • Support with transport

  • Bilingual Teaching Assistant Support

  • Sensory circuit welcome

  • Toast and juice in a safe space

  • Educational Psychologist involvement

  • Star charts

  • Buddy System

  • Routines and boundaries classes

  • FOC Breakfast Club

  • FOC After School Club

  • Referral to School Nurse

  • Therapeutic time through art

  • Separate entrance point

  • Earlier start time

  • Welcome by an Emotionally Available Adult

  • Attendance contracts

  • Internal routines and boundaries parenting course

  • Signposting to external support such as Stepping Stones, PPP parenting, parents’ forum.

  • Referral to IAPT for parental mental health support.

  • Support for parents to access education, employment, voluntary work or training.

  • Wake up calls

  • Collection from home

  • Temporary part time timetables

Formalise Support

  • Parents are informed of the severity of the situation and the fact that we are now required to elevate the support given to more formal support. Parents are informed of the consequences that may occur should their child’s attendance not improve. Parents are given a clear insight into actions that may follow including prosecution and education supervision orders.

  • For pupils who have persistently poor attendance, or those who are making little sign of improvement and whose absence is largely due to medical reasons, repeated illness or mental wellbeing of the child; we attempt to seek parental or carer consent to refer the family to the school nurse.

  • For pupils who have persistently poor attendance, or those who are making little sign of improvement and whose absence is largely due to limited routines and/or boundaries, parental wellbeing, home conditions, unemployment, finances or complexities within the family; we attempt to seek parental or carer consent to engage the family in the Early Help process.

  • Should a family decline all offers of formal support, a meeting with school and parents is called to put in place a parenting contract to formalise the support given.

  • School will continue to attempt to engage families in the formal support required monthly.

  • School begins to issue attendance pathway letter 1 and letter 2 to reinforce the severity of the situation, but always with the aim of providing challenge to encourage parents to engage with the support available. Alongside each letter being issued, school hold a meeting with parents to attempt to prevent further escalation.

  • School seek support from the Local Authority Attendance Team at this point, sharing our concerns, sharing attendance data of specific pupils and gaining their support alongside issuing letter 1 and letter 2.

  • If attendance is poor, the safeguarding team will map the family against the social care thresholds to consider whether a referral into social care should be made.

  • If a pupil’s attendance drops below 50%, a referral is made into social care

Enforce

  • Formalised support continues throughout this stage.

  • The Inclusion and Safeguarding Officer will discuss pupils of concerns with the Early Help Integrated Working Lead to seek advice and support.

  • School holds weekly attendance reviews for these families, always attempting to build positive relationships and re-engage parents into the support offered.

  • Pathway letter 3 including a FPN is issued. The intention of the enforcement is always to provide the challenge to encourage parents and carers to engage with and access support.

  • Following FPN, should attendance fail to improve, attendance pathway letters 2 and 3 are issued again and school seek to take a case to the Local Authority School Attendance Panel (LASAP) to seek an education supervision order.

  • If an Education supervision order is issued

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