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Attendance concerns and tips to resolve them

School Attendance – Children who do not have good attendance do not meet their potential. FACT.


The link between poor attendance and poor outcomes is striking; this is true nationally and at Ashgate Primary School.  Our own data over the last two years (as well as pre-pandemic) backs this up.  It is simple; children who do not attend school regularly predominantly underperform against their age-related expectations and SAT outcomes.


Too many parents do not understand how absence impacts negatively on their children’s wellbeing, or fail to take their responsibilities seriously.


We do have an attendance issue

Sadly, absence at Ashgate Primary School remains in the highest 20% of schools nationally (IDSR 2023) which is a great concern.  During the recent Ofsted inspection (June 2023) the limiting factor to the school not being graded as outstanding for Personal Development was the level of persistent absenteeism.  


Nationally, there has been an increase in absence since the Covid pandemic.  The reasons for this are unclear at this time, but there is a sad irony after recognising the positive impact schools have on children, families and their community, too many are not engaging with them now.


Do not let your child become a statistic of poor attendance.  Please ensure that you take all steps to allow your child to attend school.


Here are some tips to help you or someone you know achieve and sustain good attendance:

  1. Establish a routine and stick to it:
  • Set the expectation that school will be attended and is not optional.
    • Whist it is often good to discuss and explain expectations in the home, it is also good to establish that some things are not negotiable.
    • Set a consistent daily routine that includes a regular bedtime and wake-up time (earlier if you find yourself late regularly).
    • Plan specific times for homework, extracurricular activities, and relaxation.
    • Some children benefit from pre warnings, “tablet away in 10 minutes, in bed in 30 minutes”.
  1. Get organized:
    • Prepare any school uniform and pack your bag the night before to avoid morning rushes.
  2. Stay healthy:
    • Prioritise physical and mental health by getting enough sleep, eating nutritious meals, and engaging in regular exercise.
    • Practice good hygiene to prevent illnesses and ensure well-being.
    • Promote sleep hygiene – remove electronic items (including phones!) at a given time and reduce the risk of distractions.
  3. Communicate:
    • Inform teachers or school staff about any challenges affecting attendance.
  4. Understand the importance of attending school:
    • Recognise the long-term benefits of education and how attendance contributes to personal and professional success.
  5. Address challenges early:
    • If facing difficulties, seek help from teachers, or other support services as soon as possible.
    • Addressing challenges early can prevent them from becoming major obstacles.
  6. Celebrate achievements:
    • Acknowledge and celebrate achievements, whether big or small.
    • Positive reinforcement can help maintain motivation and a sense of accomplishment.
  7. Stay positive:
    • Maintain a positive attitude towards school and learning.
    • Focus on the opportunities for growth and development that education provides.

Remember that consistent attendance is a key factor in academic success. By incorporating these tips into your routine, you can create a positive and supportive environment that fosters regular school attendance.