PISES is committed to working with parents and children to ensure that, wherever possible, all children enrolled at schools receive an education that maximises the opportunity for every child to achieve his / her full potential.
Staff in schools, the Principal and administration will work with students and families to ensure that each student attends regularly and punctually.
All children are likely to be absent from or late to school at some time in their school career. However, persistent poor attendance and poor punctuality is disruptive to the individual and to the work of the class and may be an early warning of other difficulties. Where there are genuine reasons for absence, the school’s administration will work with staff to ensure that the child’s education is not suffered.
Aims Of The Policy And Guidelines
To improve overall attendance of students at school
To make good attendance and punctuality a priority for all those associated with schools including parents, students and teachers.
Students are expected to be in school every day. Parents are expected to contact their child's school on the day of the child's absence to inform the school of that absence. Parents are encouraged to notify the school of pre-arranged appointments as soon as the date of such appointments is known. For any reason, a written note providing the dates of, and reasons for, the child's absence is required from the parents within five days of the child's return to school. The purpose of this note is to determine whether or not the student's absence is excused or unexcused. This note will be maintained until the end of the school year for documentation purposes.
The following conditions provide the only acceptable reasons for a student's absence from school.
When a student is unable to attend school due to an illness, a note written by the parent or a physician documenting the illness will provide evidence of the illness for the school.
Extended Illness –
For students who are absent because of chronic illnesses or because of a need for homebound services, the parent must complete a extended illness notification form at the beginning of the enrolment of the student in school or upon the onset of the student condition that affects regular attendance.
Documentation from a physician will be required. For students who are absent more than ten days in a month and/or who exhibit defined patterns of absences, the parent will be required to complete the Extended Illness Notification Form.
Documentation from a physician will be required. If the parent does not complete the form or does not provide documentation from a physician of an extended illness.
Family Death or Emergency –
For absences because of a death in the family or an emergency beyond the family's control, the parent must notify the school and provide documentation for the absence.
Exceptional Circumstances –
The principal may approve prearranged absences for situations in which an exemption from attendance appears to be in the best interests of the student and his/her family. Prior to the student's absence, the parent or guardian must complete the Request for exceptional Circumstance to Attendance Form. The parent will document on this request the rationale for the absence, dates of absence, and siblings.
Parent Notification Procedures
Excused and Unexcused Absences
For all absences, the school will contact the home on each day of the child's absence from school from secretary’s office. The following procedure will be implemented when notifying parent of unexcused absence:
Whenever any student fails to report to school and no indication has been received by school. The School’s secretary that the student's parent is aware of and supports the student’s absence (unexcused absence), a reasonable effort to notify the parent by telephone to obtain an explanation for the student's absences shall be made.
Whenever a student fails to report to school for a total of three (3) days, a letter will be sent by the school explaining the consequences which will affect his/her studies.
Whenever a student fails to report to school for a total of five (5) days in the school year. As defined above (unexcused absence), the school will make a reasonable effort to ensure that direct contact is made with the parent, whether in person or through telephone conversation by the principal or coordinator.
Excessive Excused Absences
The school will also notify the excessive absences or a pattern of absence that appear to be having an effect on the academic performance of a child. Efforts will be made to identify reasons for excessive absenteeism or patterns of absenteeism.
When students are absent, an opportunity to make up work will be provided. Make-up work is encouraged so that students will profit from future instruction. In middle and senior school, it is the student's responsibility to ask the teacher for the make-up work. Work (including tests) missed due to an absence may be made up and credit given for such work. Upon the student's return to school, he/she must make up the work within five school days.
Additional time may be granted by the principal due to the extenuating circumstances. A student will not be penalized for a teacher's absence. Students are encouraged to get make-up work assignments before returning to school.
They may do this according to the following procedures:
Absence of one or two days: Contact a friend in class to obtain information on work missed.
Absence of three or more day
Call the school office requesting assignments remembering that teachers need 24 hours to prepare assignments.
Late Arrival and Punctuality
Any child could be late for class at some time in their school career. However, persistent poor timekeeping is disruptive to the individual and to the work of the class and may be an early warning of other difficulties.
The following process and standard letters are attached for guidance. Schools may modify these to fit particular circumstances. However, Head teachers should be mindful that, in the event of more formal procedures against parents, evidence of previous actions will be required.
Parents may not be aware that their child is late for school – she/he may leave home in adequate time for school and delay on the way. Late coming will be recorded on the class register. At the end of each week, any unexplained late coming will result in a letter home demanding an explanation.
Tardiness to school or to class is addressed as a discipline issue and will be dealt by discipline committee and school administration.
Taking a child out of school during the normal school day
Parents will be encouraged to make appointments, where possible, with the normal school day. Parents, who have to take a child out of school for an appointment should, where possible, notify the school in advance. If a parent wishes the child to be released into the care of another adult or to be allowed to leave the school unaccompanied, then the parent must notify the school that this is the case. The school must appropriately log all such notifications.
Where the child is being collected, the parent / authorised adult will be required to sign the child out, indicating when the child will return. The same basic process applies to children who have to be taken out of school during the school day because they are unwell.