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I meet with our Education Welfare Office fortnightly at St Matthias. We review our whole school attendance and any individual attendance which has fallen below 90%, which is known as Persistent Absence.

We both fully understand the pressures of this year and the pandemic however I would really like to express how important it is for all children to attend school every day and on time. The children have already missed so much face to face learning that we need to ensure that we continue to establish a good routine at school arriving on time and every day.

Lessons start promptly at 9am and when a child is late, be it a few minutes or much longer, they miss vital information and learning which can stall their ability to make progress within a lesson and retain key skills and strategies. Being on time is also a life skill for the future. We all want our children to achieve well and have aspirations for the future, so instilling good punctuality in them at this young age, so they arrive on time at school will set them in good stead for their future, at high school and then in their own desired careers.

Taking holidays in term time is strongly discouraged and I am not permitted to authorise any holidays in term time. Please bear this in mind when booking your holiday next year, as it could lead to a fine for both parents regardless of whether you are separated.

If we ask you to take a test for symptoms of the Coronavirus and isolate while you are waiting for the results, currently this does not affect your child’s attendance percentage. COVID PCR test results are coming back very quickly now and often within 24hours. Any non-emergency medical appointments should be made out of school hours.

A genuine illness is a valid reason for absence. 

Any illness or absence must be reported by 9.15am to Mrs Kazerooni via email or by telephone 01684 574984.

I am highlighting this as every school has a target attendance to reach of  96-97% and I would like St Matthias to be aiming for this percentage next year. Currently our whole school attendance is below 94% and even with the

struggles of this year we need to aim higher! At the end of the day excellent attendance = optimal learning and I know that we all want our children to achieve the very best they can.

We also understand personal circumstances and would like to offer any assistance to support punctuality and daily attendance. If you have any concerns or struggles with punctuality or attendance please get in contact with us or our EWO, Mrs Lane, by telephoning 07399 314752 as we would be more than happy to support and increase your child’s attendance should it need improving.