School Attendance Policy
There is a very strong tradition of good attendance in St. Patrick’s N.S. However, we are anxious that parents be aware of the absolute necessity for regular punctual attendance at school.
Defining and Recording Non-Attendance:
“A parent is obliged to cause a child between the ages of 6 and 16 to attend at ‘a national school or other suitable school’ on each day that the school is open for instruction.” Education Welfare Act 2000
If there is a difficulty with punctuality or poor attendance:
Procedures in relation to the Removal from Register/Transfer from another school:
The school is aware that ‘A principal may only remove a pupil’s name from a school register where they have been informed that the child has been enrolled in another school or when the Welfare Board notifies them that the child has been registered by it as in receipt of out-of-school education.’
The Board of Management may in exceptional circumstances suspend a child. (see Code of Behaviour)
Transfer to another school:
Where parents remove a child from a school the principal is obliged to give them and the new school a certificate stating child’s record of attendance and absences in the school, the last class the child attended, and any other relevant information pertaining to the education of the child.
Transfer from another school:
When St. Patrick’s receives a new student, the principal will notify the principal of the child’s last school attended that the child is now registered in our school “as soon as may be”. When a principal receives notification that a child has been registered elsewhere he/she must notify the principal of the pupil’s new school of any problems in relation to attendance at the pupil’s former school and of such matters relating to the child’s educational progress as he or she considers appropriate.
Removal of a Pupil during the School Day
Pupils are expected to remain in school for a full school day. Pupils should only be removed early from school in cases of emergency or unavoidable medical appointments.
If a pupil needs to leave early for an unavoidable medical appointment, a letter should be sent in beforehand from his/her parents.
If a child is sick during the school day, the secretary will firstly ring the parent and if uncontactable, will ring the emergency contact number. Ensure all phone numbers are up to date.
When collecting the child, the parent should report to the school office where she/he will be asked to sign the child out in the Appointments Record. The parent can then wait in the foyer while the secretary collects the child from the classroom.
On returning the child after the appointment, the return time will be recorded in the Appointments Record.
No child will be allowed to leave the school with any other adult other than his/her parent unless a letter has been received beforehand naming the person who is to collect the child.
Our school day begins at 9.20am. If a child has a medical, dental or unavoidable morning appointment, a letter be sent in beforehand from his/her parents. The school rolla is taken daily at 10am. In this case the rolla will be kept open for this child until 12pm (maximum). After this time, the child has missed half of the school day and will be marked absent.
The parent should ring the school en-route and explain the situation. The secretary can then have the child collected from the class and ready to meet the parent. The parent will be asked to sign the child out in the Appointments Record.
No child will be allowed to leave the school with any other adult other than his/her parent unless the parent themselves has been in an accident. In such cases, the child will only be released to an immediate family member known to the Principal & staff, as named as the Emergency Contact person.
School starts at 9.20am. For security reasons, all doors will be locked at 9.40am. Rollas will be called at 9.40am. If a child arrives to school after 9.40am, they must be brought to the Office through the Reception Entrance. Parents/ Guardians/Senior pupils will be asked to sign the Late Arrivals Record. The secretary will bring the junior children to the classroom to prevent disruption as class will have already commenced.
The Principal will meet with the parents of children who are continually late to discuss strategies to improve punctuality.
If following school intervention & strategies punctuality does not improve, the principal will report the case to the Education Welfare Officer for further intervention and action.
A copy of the policy will be given to members of staff, Board of Management, and available to parents to view in the school.
Ratified: ______________________ Date:_______________
Chairperson of the Board of Management
The original policy was drawn up in 2009, reviewed in 2011 and again in 2014.
Next review: October 2017 or as necessary