Following collaboration among staff, a suitable school policy on attendance was decided upon to reflect of DEIS status, in partnership with Board of Management.
With the introduction of the new Welfare Act in relation to attendance and an overall desire for improved attendance, the need for such a policy was identified.
Relationship to Characteristic Spirit of the School:
In co-operation with parents, we strive to help each pupil achieve his/her full potential, and so we will promote a positive attitude towards good attendance and punctuality.
- A positive attitude among children, towards coming to school.
- To discourage non-attendance for trivial reasons.
- To ensure all absences are explained by means of a note from parents/guardians.
- Adhere to our DEIS plans in relation to the number of pupils missing needless days.
Guidelines and Procedures:
Individual teachers encourage good attendance and all absences are explained with notes, written by parents in the homework journal.
Good attendance is rewarded by the class teacher, through such incentives as treat days or during assemblies with student of the week/year trophies.
Record – Keeping
- Attendance records are kept through roll-books.
- Teachers are responsible for recording attendances.
- Teachers are responsible for recording absences and retaining notes to inform the principal and H.S.C.L. re: frequent absentees.
- Parents to be informed by note/phone if absences are persistent and unexplained.
- Homework journals should be used to correspond with parents/teachers.
- Parents are informed immediately (by the principal or school secretary), if for some reason a child “runs away / leaves” the school during school hours. Circumstances surrounding the “departure” to be documented by teacher/Principal. The local Gardaí will be notified if the situation is deemed urgent.
Parents should be informed of up to-date changes in the Welfare Act regarding pupils who are absent for 20 days or more. They should be notified if there is a concern regarding their attendance and if the child has missed a large number of days.
Principal and H.S.C.L. teacher are informed by teachers re: non-attendees or frequent absentees.
Teachers complete the attendance record for NEWB figures, which is collected by the principal and stored in the office. Absences are counted and where a pattern, or significant number, of absences exits, the principal contacts the family and/or the Education Welfare Officer.
School opening hours are 9.20 am – 3 pm: 1st to 6th class senior day
9.20 a.m. – 2pm: junior and senior infant day.
Break-time: 11.00am. – 11.10am. Lunchtime: 12.30pm. – 100 p.m.
Following our June staff meeting our following yearly calendar is communicated to parents by our website and newsletter to reflect opening and closing days.
Children are rewarded for punctuality through treat days organised by the class teacher or during assemblies with student of the week trophies.
Children at Risk:
Any child/ren brought to the attention of Principal, by class teacher with concerns. Parents to be questioned/ consulted re: absences (the schools critical incident policy will be put in motion if it is needed).
The Principal will consult with parents and/or relevant agencies as appropriate.
Reporting Attendance levels:
Individual teachers calculate attendances. This information is communicated to the Principal and passed on the Board of Management.
- Parents are informed about the attendance policy and encouraged to ensure their children are attending school as much as possible and also that the children are punctual.
- Board of Management to oversee running of policy and its implementation.
School ensures it will adhere to new law governing school attendance (20 days etc).
- Teachers encourage attendance and inform Principal and parents of persistent absences.
School Organisation: individual class rolls are kept by teachers and numbers are collected and sent to the office daily.
Outside Organisations visits by school attendance officer
collaboration with HSL teacher
Good attendance means that aims that have been outlined are achieved.
Teachers will notice more continuity within school curriculum.
Our short and long term DEIS plans are working.
Effective policy making and implementation highlighted by improved overall school attendance.
Assessment of success of this policy will be through staff feedback. Our policy is open to improvements throughout the school year.
Roles and Responsibility:
Development: whole-staff “input” into initial policy.
Parents are informed of such policies within school.
All pupil absences figures to be returned to school secretary to be sent away to the N.E.W.B.
Enrolment of Children with Special Needs
On enrolment of children with special needs the Board of Management will request a copy of the child’s medical and/or psychological report or where such a report is not available, will request that the child be assessed immediately. The purpose of the assessment report is to assist the school in establishing the educational and training needs of the child relevant to his/her disability or special needs and to profile the support services required.
Following receipt of the report, the Board will assess how the school can meet the needs specified in the report. Where the Board deems that further resources are required, it will request the Special Education Needs Organiser (NCSE see Circular 01/05) to provide the resources required to meet the needs of the child as outlined in the psychological and/or medical report. These resources may include for example, access to or the provision of any or a combination of the following: visiting teacher service, resource teacher for special needs, special needs assistant, specialised equipment or furniture, transport services or other.
The school will meet with the parents/guardians of the child and with the SENO to discuss the child’s needs and the school’s suitability or capability in meeting those needs. Where necessary, a full case conference involving all parties will be held, which may include parents, principal, class teacher, learning support teacher, special class teacher, resource teacher for special needs, Special Educational Needs Organiser or psychologist, as appropriate.
It may, in certain circumstances, be necessary for the Board of Management to defer/reject an admission of a child:
- Pending the completion of an assessment report/s
- The capacity of the unit already full. Yearly decisions in relation to pupils moving on to fulltime mainstream school will be made in February in accordance with School Policies, Professional Advice from Outside Agencies, Staff and Parental Involvement.
- Lack of provision of the necessary resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills for the pupil.