Next week (Monday, February 29th to Friday, March 4th) is our Attendance Week at Newsham Primary School. The Education Welfare Officer will be on the yard (with Mrs Hartgrove) and in the office each morning to monitor levels of punctuality and attendance so please do everything you can to ensure your child is at school on time each day.
As you know, we are trying everything possible to improve levels of punctuality and attendance at Newsham. A lot of our work is based on rewards (Class rewards, 100% attendance rewards, “In it to win it” raffle etc.). We try to offer a whole range of rewards for pupils with really good attendance and are currently asking the children what they think is fair and meaningful. Our latest check has been to identify all pupils with 100% attendance in January and February and these children will be given a non-uniform pass that they can use next Friday, March 4th. If you have any other ideas of ways in which we can improve attendance, we’d love to hear from you as this is an area of school performance that simply needs to be better than it currently is.
In addition to a whole host of rewards and motivational strategies, we are having to take a much stricter approach with persistent absenteeism and families taking children out of school in term time. During our recent Ofsted inspection, we were asked to provide evidence that fixed penalty fines had been imposed where appropriate and that families have been reported to our Education Welfare Officer where necessary. As part of this more robust approach towards families who have repeated patterns of absence or do not contact us to tell us why their child is not at school, we have started our own home visits on the day of a pupil absence. Please support us in raising attendance levels to ensure that we do not have to resort to these strategies. It is not the way I like to work and would much prefer our partnership approach wherever possible. Thank-you very much.