Dear Parent / Carer
Last year a review was commissioned by the Department for Education to consider the impact of school absence, especially holidays, on a child’s education and achievement. School attendance data showed that children with attendance of at least 96% achieved better SATs results. There is a clear link between attendance and achievement.
Following the review, the DfE have changed the regulations allowing schools to only authorise holidays under ‘exceptional circumstances’. The government want to dispel the belief that there is an automatic entitlement to an annual two-week term time holiday.
To illustrate the impact of taking holidays in term time it was noted that if children are taken away for a two-week holiday every year and have the average number of days off for sickness and appointments, then by the time they leave school at sixteen they will have missed a year of school.
If, despite this change in the law, as from September 2013, you wish to request holiday leave, you should write a letter addressed to Mrs Beardsmore or Mrs Francis, outlining the exceptional circumstances – you must do this before booking the holiday. We will look at each holiday request on an individual basis to decide if it meets the new criteria.
All absence, not only holidays, has an impact on a child’s progress. We want to ensure that children miss as little school as possible. One of the most damaging forms of absence can be the child who takes several odd days throughout the year. These can mount up really quickly and be very damaging to a child’s learning. Please help us to eliminate this form of absence by, for example, making sure whenever possible appointments are made out of school hours, still sending your child to school if they feel a little under the weather, contacting us early if there is an issue that could affect your child’s attendance.
Please remember: EVERY SCHOOL DAY COUNTS!
Mrs D Beardsmore