Attendance & Absence

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Attendance matters. Encouraging your child to attend school every day is the of the most powerful ways you can support them in their education, and set them up for success both at school, and in life. Pupils who miss school frequently can fall behind with their work and do less well in exams, lose touch with their friends, and miss out on opportunities to fulfil their tremendous potential.  

Kings’ reputation for academic excellence is down, in no small part, to the regular attendance of our pupils.  

Pupils must not be absent from school unless they are ill. Casual or holiday absence is not granted, unless the reason for this is an exceptional circumstance which is determined at the discretion of the Headteacher.  

At Kings’ School we have always stressed the importance of regular attendance and we have in place detailed monitoring systems involving Tutors, Heads of Year, and an Attendance Co-ordinator. 

Legislation and Local Authority guidelines require all schools to thoroughly investigate any suspected cases of unauthorised absence and report the results of these investigations to the appropriate authorities. 

Parental co-operation is therefore requested in restricting, as far as possible, dental, and medical appointments to out of school hours. 

If your child is unavoidably absent

Please text, telephone or email the school on each day of your child’s absence with a reason for the absence. If this information is not received by 9.00am, you may receive an automated message regarding your child’s unexplained absence for that day. If your child has a prolonged illness, please telephone the school to alert us and speak to your child’s Year Team, to explore the support available. 

Contact details 

Absence Text:01962 600028
Absence Line:01962 861161 and leave a message by 9.00am on the dedicated line.
Email:pupilabsence@kings-winchester.hants.sch.uk
Main School telephone number:01962 861161
School Comms Gatewayschoolcomms.com
Open hours 8.30am to 4.30pm 

Confirming Legitimate Absences

Parental notes to confirm legitimate absence must be provided promptly on your child’s return to school if you have left a message on the pupil absence line. Alternatively, medical evidence can be photocopied and used as reason for absence. A letter is not necessary if you have informed us via email or text. 

If a pupil is temporarily unfit for Physical Education a note must be brought from parent or guardian. 

In cases of prolonged illness or disability a medical certificate from the doctor is required. 

What we will do to monitor and respond to attendance concerns

You will receive a ‘Traffic Light’ letter from us, once a term, or three times across an academic year. As a school, we have a responsibility to update you on your child’s attendance termly and will do so using this system.

· Above 97% will be Purple

· Between 95.0% and 96.99% will be Green

· Between 90.0% and 94.99% will be Amber

· Under 89.99% will Red

If your child’s attendance falls below 95%, you may receive an initial concern letter from us, advising you that it has dropped below expectations. While 95% would be considered an exceptional exam result, it equates to 10 days of absence across an academic year.

In addition to the ‘Traffic Light’ letters, you may receive a letter if your child’s attendance falls below 95% and is a combination of unexplained, unauthorised or sporadic absence.

If, following this letter, your child’s attendance continues to deteriorate, you may receive a further letter inviting you to attend a meeting with your child’s Head of Year and a member of the Attendance Team.

Occasionally, we may invite parents to attend meetings with us outside of this process and as part of our Attendance Intervention days.

Moreover, if your child’s attendance is below 90% and they are therefore, considered to be persistently absent, a member of the Attendance Team may book appointments to meet with you at Parent’s Evening.

If your child is persistently absent, absent without explanation or absent for a period of time longer than 3 school days, school staff may visit you at home, to locate and plan for your child’s return.

If your child has long term absence from school, school staff will make every effort to visit you and/or meet with you and child on Teams, at least once every two weeks.

If your child is absent from school for more than 5 school days, consecutive or sporadic, across any 10-week period, and this absence is unauthorised, it may be subject to a Penalty Notice or referral to the Attendance Legal Panel.

Guidance and Support

In almost all cases, the Pastoral team are able to provide guidance, support and recommend strategies, that will enable your child to attend school more often.

Post pandemic, we know that anxiety levels have risen amongst children and recognise that we need to think creatively to rebuild their resilience, confidence and encourage their full attendance. We regularly refer to Hampshire County Council’s guidance on ‘Emotionally Based School Avoidance’ and encourage you to access the Parent and Pupil guide, if you feel this applies to you and your child.

If you have any queries or concerns relating to your child’s attendance or wellbeing, please don’t hesitate to contact their Head of Year, our Guidance Manager or a member of the Attendance Team.

Pupils must not be absent from school unless they are ill – casual or holiday absence is not granted, unless the reason for this is considered to be an exceptional circumstance, at the discretion of the Headteacher. At Kings’ School we have always stressed the importance of regular attendance and detailed monitoring systems involving Tutors, Heads of Year and Attendance Co-ordinator.

Legislation and Local Authority guidelines, require all schools to thoroughly investigate any suspected cases of unauthorised absence and report the results of these investigations to the appropriate authorities.

  • Co-operation is therefore requested in restricting, as far as possible, dental and medical appointments to out of school hours.
  • Please text, telephone or email the school on each day of your child’s absence with a reason for the absence. If this information is not received by 9.00am, you may receive an automated message, outlining your child’s unexplained absence for that day. If your child has a prolonged illness, please telephone the school to alert us and speak to your child’s Year team, to explore the support available.

Absence Text: 01962 600028
Absence Line: 01962 861161 and leave a message by 9.00am on the dedicated line.
Email: pupilabsence@kings-winchester.hants.sch.uk
Main School telephone number: 01962 861161
School Comms Gateway schoolcomms.com
Open hours 8.30am to 4.30pm

  • Parental notes to confirm legitimate absence must be provided promptly on your child’s return to school if you have left a message on the pupil absence line. Alternatively, medical evidence can be photocopied and used as reason for absence. A letter is not necessary if you have informed us via email or text.
  • If a pupil is temporarily unfit for Physical Education a note must be brought from parent or guardian.
  • In cases of prolonged illness or disability a medical certificate from the doctor is required.

Pupil Absence Changes

  • Request for leave of Absence

Amendments to school attendance regulations were updated and enforced from 2013: (Pupil Registration) (England) regulations state that Headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.

In making a request for an authorized absence from school, parents should write to the head teacher and explain why the circumstance is exceptional. If the absence is unauthorised and if the number of sessions meets the thresholds set down in Hampshire’s Code of Conduct, parent/carers will be issued with a fixed penalty, or other legal action may be considered.

The maximum number of penalty notices is two per child per parent, during a 12-month period.  Further information can be found in the Hampshire County Council Code of Conduct.

Following the outcome of the Supreme Court case, the Isle of Wight Council –v- Platt, Hampshire County Council have confirmed their position with regards to the issuing of penalty notices.

Schools are instructed to continue to unauthorise absence for holidays in term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. These will be subject to a penalty notice, as advised by Hampshire County Council.

It is important to note that penalty notices can also be issued if a pupil has at least 10 sessions of unauthorised absences, across any 100-day period. In addition to this, the issuing of Penalty Notices for persistent lateness resumes. Penalty Notices will lead to a fine of £60-£120 and could eventually result in a prosecution, if these fines remain unpaid.

As a school, we will continue to work constructively with parents to promote good attendance. We understand that it can present problems for some families and we will do our very best to be supportive, but we will be complying with the latest guidelines issued by the Local Authority.

Where additional support may be required to improve attendance, a referral to the Attendance Legal Panel may be considered by the Pastoral team.

Reducing absence and improving punctuality in schools is a key priority both nationality and locally because missing school damages a pupil’s attainment levels, disrupts school routines as well as the learning of others and can leave a pupil vulnerable to anti-social behaviour and youth crime.

You will have up to 21 days at £60 or 28 days at £120 from the date of posting to pay the Penalty Notice in full. If you fail to do so, the local authority is required, by law, to commence proceedings in the Magistrates’ Court for the original offence of poor school attendance.