At Ivybridge Community College we expect high levels of attendance and punctuality from all of our pupils. We believe that regular attendance promotes positive social development, develops self discipline and improves pupil progress. There is a clear link between attendance and attainment and as a school we expect all pupils to aim to achieve at least 97% attendance. Outstanding attendance is regularly recognised and rewarded throughout the year.
Poor attendance can have a detrimental effect on progress. A student who has 90% attendance misses almost 4 weeks of the school year, which equates to over 100 hours of learning.
What do I do if my child is ill and cannot attend College?
In order to ensure the safety and whereabouts of our students, we require parents/carers to contact the Attendance Officer before 8.30am on the day of absence, if their son/daughter is going to be absent from College for either all, or part of the day.
The College has a 24-hour dedicated line, so messages can be left at any time, day or night.
Absence Line – 01752 891777 (24hr answer machine)
When leaving a message, you will be asked to state:
- Your name
- The name of the student
- Their Tutor Group (this is important as we often have two children with the same name)
- A reason for the absence
- An expected date of return, if possible
This should be followed up with a note in the Kite Planner, for the Tutor to see on their return.
Five reasons why attending College is so important:
- Students have the right to an education
- Parents/Carers have a legal responsibility to ensure their child attends College. Colleges and Local Authorities have a duty to ensure that students take up this right
- There is a direct link between high student absence and low attainment in College
- Getting students to attend College regularly and be on time is a very important skill for life beyond College
- Poor attendance can potentially lead to students being isolated from their friends, risk of bullying, poor and unsettled behaviour, anti-social behaviour or criminal activity.
Ten Attendance Tips:
How can I help my child attend College regularly?
- Ensure they pack their bag the night before.
- Ensure that their uniform is ready, especially after the holidays or weekend.
- Get them to bed at a reasonable hour so that they get a good night’s sleep – Don’t let them take their phone to bed.
- Set the alarm clock early enough to allow plenty of time to get ready properly.
- Make sure they have some breakfast.
- Remind them to set off in the car, the train, the bus, or start walking early enough so that they are not late: punctuality is important (students on College site by 8.40am).
- Check to make sure they have everything they need – Essential 8, books, PE kit, bus/train pass, lanyard, etc.
- Talk to your child about what they did in College today.
- Ensure your child has completed any homework or revised for any tests (as this can cause undue anxiety if not completed and can lead to non-attendance). Use Epraise to stay up to date on what homework is being set.
- If you are at all worried about your child’s College attendance please contact the College and their Tutor and/or Pastoral Leader as soon as possible so that we can offer support.
Some facts and figures on Attendance
- 90% attendance equals half a day of College missed every week
- One College year at 90% attendance = 4 whole weeks of lessons and College work missed
- 90% attendance over 5 years of secondary College = half a College year missed
- There is a direct correlation between low student attendance and future employment prospects
Research suggests that 17 missed College days a year is equal to a GCSE grade drop in achievement (Department for Education and Skills).
- It is very important that your child is on the College site before 8.40am
- Students arriving after this time without an acceptable reason/parent note will be marked as late and spend two teaching hours in reset
- If you are aware your child is going to be late please telephone Absence Line – 01752 891777 (24hr answer machine)
- If your child arrives late to College they must sign in at Student reception before they go to their first lesson.
Leave of Absence During Term Time
The School will not routinely grant permission for leave of absence to be taken in term time and discourage parents/carers making an application for leave except in “special or exceptional circumstances”.
My child needs a medical appointment or orthodontic treatment during College time – What should I do?
- We completely understand that certain medical appointments, such as orthodontic treatments, have to be carried out in College time and parents have very little choice on the times that they are offered. In these cases we only ask that we are given advance warning and students return to College as quickly as possible.
- For all other appointments (such as doctor or dentist) we ask that, where possible, these are made after 2.30pm in order for your child to miss as little College time as possible. Whole days will not be authorised for routine appointments.
- Students who are off College for more than 3 days will also require medical evidence to be given to the College – This can be a GP appointment card or medication/prescription
Can I take my child out of College for any other reason?
- It is not in your child’s best interests to miss any College time. Every College day counts towards your child’s future. Day’s off College add up to lost learning
- Your child is at College for 190 days and at home for 175 non-College days a year.
- This time not at College gives families ample opportunity to go on holiday, visit relatives, taking long weekends, birthday treats or special days out, to go shopping etc.
I am concerned that my child is not ill but does not want to come to College – What should I do?
Contact your child’s Tutor, the Pastoral Leader or the Attendance Officer and make the College aware. We can offer advice, support and strategies to work together to rectify the situation.