Water Lane Primary Academy

"Enrichment for life"


At Water Lane Primary Academy we know that good attendance is the key to successful schooling and we believe our pupils can be amongst the best. Although we aim for 100% attendance, each year we set a target for attendance & this is used to compare us to other schools nationally. Our current target is 97% attendance. Attending school every day will help give your child the best possible start in life.


Why is it important for children to attend school?

  • Attendance has a direct link to attainment. Achieving at school builds a child’s self-esteem, as well as enhancing their future prospects.
  • Attending school and being part of the school’s community gives a child a sense of belonging and promotes their social development.
  • Attending school regularly builds their confidence and resistance.

We kindly therefore ask that you adhere to the following procedures if your child is going to be absent from school in which may impact their attendance.


Reporting Absence (due to illness)

So that we can be more efficient in dealing with pupil absences, we ask that if your child is going to be absent from nursery or school, that you call the school on 01279 417410, to report an absence before 8.40am every day that your child is absent. This will give you the opportunity to leave a voicemail. If you are unable to call the school, then please email the school.


Requesting Leave of Absence (for holidays and exceptional circumstances)

You must inform the school if you are planning to take your child out of school during term time and we should be notified at least four weeks prior to the absence commencing although we appreciate that there may be times when this is not possible. Please complete a Leave of Absence form in which your request will then be considered, and a letter will follow detailing the Headteacher's decision.


Following amendments to the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006 that came into effect 1 September 2013, schools are only allowed to grant leave of absence from school in exceptional circumstances.

When making a written request for leave of absence from school in term time you need to explain why the circumstances are exceptional, and therefore cannot be taken within the normal 13 weeks holiday your child has from school.

If you require any further details please refer to our attendance policy.


Good attendance

Although an exam mark of 90% is very good, when looking at school attendance 90% equates to half a day absence per week. This in turn equates to 4 weeks absence in an academic year. If a child persistently had 90% attendance over the course of their education, they would have been absent for a whole year of their education.

How we promote good attendance

  1. We celebrate good attendance in assemblies and on the weekly newsletter: There is an attendance noticeboard, and we celebrate the best attendance of the week, the month and the current year. Classes work together to try and achieve good attendance.
  2. We celebrate good attendance in class: Each class has an attendance board game and every day where the whole class are present, the class token moves on and the children can win rewards and prizes.
  3. Each individual child is rewarded for attendance: Each child has the opportunity to earn a badge for 98% or better attendance over each term. There are 7 badges to collect: bronze, silver, gold, emerald, sapphire, ruby and garnet. Class teachers do have discretion to award badges for special circumstances.
  4. Each class is rewarded for attendance: When a class wins ‘Best attendance of the month,’ they enjoy a fun afternoon with a different teacher. This year, children have enjoyed: Sports, Arts, Science and Chess afternoons.
  5. Children who qualify for Pupil Premium are supported in achieving good attendance.


How we support families where children have low attendance:

  1. Daily checks - We monitor attendance daily. We contact parents to find out why children are absent.
  2. Letters – We write letters to parents to inform them about their child’s attendance and to encourage them to improve their children’s attendance.
  3. Tracker 1 – We track all children fortnightly who have between 92% and 94% attendance.
  4. Tracker 2 – We track all children daily who have attendance below 92%
  5. Meeting 1 - The class teacher or Pastoral Support Worker meets with parents to offer support in improving attendance.
  6. Meeting 2 – Where attendance doesn’t improve, the Headteacher meets with parents.
  7. EWO - Where attendance does not improve after a meeting with the Headteacher, an Education Welfare Officer may be engaged to meet with the family.