Late Collections After School
I have in the past expressed the importance of collecting children on time at the end of the day.
Thank you to all those who have taken the positive steps to ensure children are collected on time. Several parents have supported the school and their children by making suitable adjustments to their routines.
Sadly, drop off and collection remains an issue for the school. Yesterday afternoon saw 13 children (just short of 5% of pupils) not collected at the end of the day. This meant they were cared for in the Reception Area by 2 staff that were attempting to track down parents, receive payments, answer calls, deal with queries and complete their regular duties. 13 children uncollected is not acceptable.
Recently we have had children repeatedly collected as late as 4pm, and as late as 4:30pm.
Whilst we accept that there may be occasions when arriving late is unavoidable, such as severe traffic jams or immediate medical emergencies, reasons presented to staff, such as:
are not acceptable, genuine and unavoidable reasons to leave your child in the after hours care of my staff. The school cannot, as I have said before, act as an interim child minding service. All my staff have tasks and responsibilities after school, including meetings, clubs, training and preparation activities – all designed to support your child.
Parents and carers are respectfully reminded that although we have a duty of care towards pupils registered at the school, this does not extend to child care arrangements for parents. I politely ask you to carefully consider your arrangements for collection of your child and always consider leaving enough time to manage unforeseen circumstances and ensure that your personal arrangements place your child’s well being first.
I am taking this matter seriously. We do maintain a log of pupils who are collected late from school and I am seeking guidance and advice as to what steps I can take to deal with repeated late collection, as it is an unsatisfactory welfare arrangement. Persistent poor provision for collecting children may, in some circumstances, be deemed as neglectful care and may require referral to an outside agency. My office staff are under instruction to record late arrival and collection and secure the reason this has occurred. We do this in the interest of all children.
It is not my intention to appear uncaring or punitive; however, the situation is now becoming increasingly concerning and we neither have the capacity and resources, nor should it be the duty of my Reception staff, to be a first option fall back for poor organisation or a lackadaisical approaches to a child’s welfare.
Your consideration is appreciated.