020 8556 0103     school@downsellprimary.waltham.sch.uk     Downsell Road, Leyton, London, E15 2BS  

Key Information

Attendance & Punctuality

16 Feb 2024

At Downsell Primary School, we believe that regular and punctual attendance are key elements in promoting children’s learning and attainment.

We have a school target of 96% for all pupils, this is the MINIMUM attendance figure that we, as a school, are expected to achieve by the Government.

Parent / Carers

Parents have a legal responsibility to ensure their children have an education.

Section 444 (1) of the Education Act 1996 states "if a child of compulsory school age who is a registered pupil at a school fails to attend regularly at the school, his/her parent is guilty of an offence." 
For more information of the Government’s guidance please go to the following page: https://www.gov.uk/school-attendance-absence
Important updates in effect from September 2023

The Local Authority may issue a fixed penalty notice (FPN) if your child does not attend school regularly. 

The FPN can be issued for the following reasons:
  • when a pupil has 10 or more sessions of unauthorised absences in a 6 week period (1 school day = 2 sessions AM / PM). 
  • persistent late arrival to school that is recorded with a 'U' code (please read the attendance policy below) 
The penalty is £120 per parent / carer, per child. This is reduced to £60 if paid within 21 days. 

Please take a moment to read through the following school documents:
 If you would like a hard copy of these documents, please speak to the school office. 
Parents / carers can keep up to date with their child's attendance via Weduc. As part of our attendance procedures in school, we also adopt the use of the traffic light system to provide parents / carers with an easy to understand overview of their child’s attendance.

Our traffic light system for attendance

  Percentage Comment
Green 96 – 100% Your child’s attendance meets our school expectation. You have supported your child with achieving the best possible outcomes in life.
If your child has achieved 100% - well done!
Amber 94 – 95.9% Stage 1:
Your child’s attendance is a cause of concern. We know that this may be due to illness or other authorised absences but we hope that by bringing this to your attention now, will help you and your child.
91 – 93.9% Stage 2:
Your child’s attendance is a cause for concern.
At this stage, we will need to arrange a formal meeting to support you and your child with improving this.
Red 90% and below Your child’s attendance is far from our expectations and they are now on the persistent absentees list. We will need to meet formally and draw up an action plan together. Unless rapid improvement is made you will be flagged up to our EWO and your case may be referred on further, which can also lead to possible fines.

Through the monitoring of our pupil’s attendance, we ensure that we keep parents / carers aware of their child’s attendance through our traffic light letters. These letters are issued at different stages throughout the term, dependent of what stage your child is at.

We then issue letters for all children at the end of each term.
This system works alongside our attendance policy, to ensure that as a school we are committed to the following principles:
  • To encourage all pupils to attend school and achieve their maximum potential.
  • To promote good attendance throughout the school, aiming for at least 96% for the academic year
  • To monitor attendance and use attendance data to work towards agreed targets.
  • To work in partnership with parents and carers in promoting excellent attendance and punctuality, as well as the LA and other agencies where necessary.
Pupil Assembly

We launched our new attendance initiatives in school with the children. Please click the link below to view the slides from the assembly:

Attendance Assembly.pdf  

We also have a child friendly version of our attendance policy that has been shared with the children. 

Child Friendly Attendance Policy.pdf

Working with outside agencies 

Downsell works with the Education Welfare Officer (EWO) to support the improvement of attendance for all pupils and particular groups of children causing a concern.

The EWO’s role involves the following:
  • Monitoring of children causing concern
  • Meetings
  • Home visits
  • Legal enforcement i.e. fines and court action

The school gates are open from 8:40am until 8:50am. Children can enter their classrooms from 8.45am.

As part of our safeguarding measures we close the internal doors and classroom doors at 8.50am, children will need to go through to the office to be registered.

Pupils who are consistently late, are disrupting not only their own education but also that of other children in their class.
Where persistent lateness gives cause for concern, further action may be taken, you may be contacted by our education welfare office and invited in for a meeting. 
Did you know?

5 minutes late every day = 3 days of learning lost each academic year 
10 minutes late every day = 6.5 days of learning lost each academic year 
15 minutes late every day = 10 days of learning lost each academic year 
20 minutes late every day = 13 days of learning lost each academic year 
30 minutes late every day = 30 days of learning lost each academic year 

Every minute counts!


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