Attendance, Sickness and Medicines
At Heatherside Infant School we aim to work closely with parents and carers to achieve and maintain high standards of attendance. For a child to reach their full educational achievement a high level of school attendance is essential. We are committed to providing an education of the highest quality for all our children and endeavour to provide an environment where all pupils feel valued and welcome. Parents and pupils play a part in making our school so successful. Every child has a right to access the education to which he/she is entitled. Parents and teachers share the responsibility for supporting and promoting excellent school attendance and punctuality for all. Statistics show a direct link between under-achievement and attendance less than 95%.
It is our duty to consistently strive to achieve a goal of 100% attendance for all children. Every opportunity will be used to convey to pupils and their parents or carers the importance of regular and punctual attendance. For our children to take full advantage of the educational opportunities offered it is vital a child is at school, on time, every day the school is open unless the reason for the absence is unavoidable. The routines children develop around attendance and punctuality at school are the same as the expectations of any future employer in the world of work. High attainment, confidence with peers and staff and future aspirations depend on good attendance.
Any non-attendance at school must be reported on the first day of absence. Please contact the School Office by telephone by 9.00 am and report the details of your child's absence.
As set down by the Department for Education, schools are only able to authorise absence from school in exceptional circumstances. In making a request for an authorised absence from school you will need to explain why the circumstances are exceptional (via our Absence Request Form obtainable directly from the School Office).
Please note there is no general right to authorise absence for a family holiday and if you take your child out of school without permission the absence will be unauthorised and a Penalty Notice may be issued. In Hampshire, Penalty Notices may be issued when a pupil has had 10 or more half-day sessions (equivalent to five school days) of unauthorised absence, in the last 10 school week period.
Unauthorised absence is absence not approved by the school and will be coded on your child's attendance record as one of the following:
O - unauthorised absence / U - late after close of registration / G - non-approved leave of absence (holiday)
Hampshire County Council provides advice for parents and carers about school attendance which we recommend parents and carers read for their reference, including an information leaflet for parents and carers. In June 2019, Hampshire County Council issued a revised Code of Conduct for schools issuing penalty notices following unauthorised absences which provides parents and carers with further useful information regarding attendance.
Please speak to the School Office if you have any further queries in relation to your child's attendance in school.
If your child has been sick in the night or before school, please do not send them to school as there is a strong possibility this problem will recur. This causes the unnecessary spread of bugs to children and staff - please adhere to the NHS guidelines and allow at least 48 hours before sending your child back to school.
Please contact the School Office by 9.00 am on the first day of your child's illness to advise of the reason for their absence and the anticipated period away from school. The Office staff will make a record of this and pass the information to your child's class teacher; you may be advised of further actions to take such as arranging a Covid test for your child, in line with current DfE guidance.
There is lots of useful information for parents on Healthier Together a NHS website aimed at the care of children and young people in Hampshire. Please note that our school may have a policy of absence and treatment for specific health conditions which may differ from the information provided, please check with the School Office if you are unsure whether your child is well enough to attend school.
If your child becomes ill during the school day we will contact you. Please ensure you provide the School Office with the emergency contact details for at least three adults, including parents, who we may contact during the school day should we need to.
Children often have bumps and scrapes, which will be treated in the classroom or in our Medical Room. You may also receive a "bump note" at the end of the day, detailing an accident your child may have had during the school day. Sometimes it is necessary to ring you during the day, especially if there has been a bump to the head.
Asthma inhalers, auto-injectors and other medication required for life-threatening illnesses will be administered by trained staff. We are also able to administer other prescribed and non-prescribed medicines which your child may require during the school day.
Please see the Office staff to discuss your child's medical needs in more detail and to complete the necessary paperwork.
All medicines are recorded and stored safely in the Medical Room. We ask you not to put any medication into a child's book bag for self-administration.