School wants GP sick note for any further absence!

(128 Posts)
RaisinBoys Wed 05-Dec-12 20:51:45

DS off school for 4 days, then additional 1 day following week. Called on each day of illness to report and sent email to office and teacher when he returned explaining illness and confirming dates.

He is not a sickly child so rare for him to be off school. In 6 years aside from this period of illness we can only remember 1 other week long period for chickenpox.

Scroll foward 2 weeks - just had letter from Education Welfare Officer stating that "any further days of sickness must be supported by GP letter!" and "if your [DS] continues to have days off sick we wil refer him to th school nurse who will contact your GP to determine if there are any underlying issues/problems".

We are fumiing!! (Well I am, DH just thinks "schools are agencies of the state whose sole function is to train children to conform in the future and this is par for the course").

I think this is a ridiculous over reaction and that GP's have better things to do than authorise childhood illness in children who for the most part attend school.

Aside from the difficulties in actually getting a GP's appointment in the first place....

nappysan Sun 09-Dec-12 15:02:53

lucky you that your school cares so much!

mrz Sun 09-Dec-12 11:34:41

agree that it's ridiculous but so are many of the directives's all about jumping through hoops and getting worse.

difficultpickle Sun 09-Dec-12 11:26:27

I can see what schools are trying to do but it is a ridiculous burden to add to GPs most of whom are already drowning in the workload they have. Ds was off sick on Friday with a stinking cough/cold. It is a bug he has had a week so I wouldn't bother the GP with it unless it got a lot worse.

TheLightPassenger Sun 09-Dec-12 09:59:28

I agree with Cory, I think its appalling that parents should be expected to pay for a sick note for a genuinely unwell child, not to mention the waste of NHS resources. Saggars advice is sensible and more practical.

mrz Sun 09-Dec-12 09:46:11

It seems people are taking things very personally when all schools are doing is abiding by the law. The law is there to ensure children attend school regularly and is aimed at those irresponsible parents who fail to send their child to school unfortunately as with all laws it doesn't make a distinction between those parents and responsible parents like RaisinBoys.
The government set attendance targets and schools must be able to show they are taking their responsibility seriously regardless of personal feelings because it has a consequence for the school.
My own school was given unsatisfactory for "safeguarding" in our last Ofsted simply because we hadn't evidence that we had taken action against parents like RaisinBoys! You ans I may not like getting a letter but we need to remember it isn't personal.

megandraper Sun 09-Dec-12 09:38:42

This sounds very heavy-handed.

For what it's worth, my son (Reception) has a persistent record of non-attendance for minor illness. Roughly every three weeks he gets a very high temperature for about 3 days. If some days are over the weekend, he's only off school for one day, otherwise it can be 3 days.

School have a rule that you don't go if you have a temperature. Even if they didn't, I wouldn't send him as he is not well enough. I would rather he didn't miss so much school, but there is little to be done about it.

No repercussions, since it is a private school. Just some sympathy, actually.

He is being investigated by a paediatrician to see if there is an underlying reason for this. I am having to fight for that though. His younger brother is still at nursery, but has the same issue.

I would be outraged at being asked to pay for some sort of medical certificate over this! I wouldn't object to having a conversation with someone in authority explaining the circumstances, as long as they were well-mannered about it.

PolkadotCircus Sun 09-Dec-12 09:35:16

Hmmm this annoys me because I think parents are being pressured to send in sick kids and there seems to be double standards as at our school teachers seem to have waaaaay more time off through sickness than most kids(certainly mine).

At ours you have to send them dosed up if they're not feeling unwell(d&v being the exception) and then the school will ring you if needs be(often they don't bother and I've had upset kids come home who say they've said repeatedly that they feel shite but nobody called).

Anyhooo this is what I do and we have good attendance however teachers don't seem to go by this rule and our school seems to be blighted by teachers off sick.

Was mighty hacked off this week as there is a cold/sore throat bug going round and I sent all 3 in every day dosed up only to have 2 of their teachers off over 3 days for the same bloody bug-not fair and my kids are starting to notice.1 of my dc threw a mighty strop when I dosed her up and sent her off with a pack of tissues as she said it wasn't fair as Mrs **was allowed to stay at home when she feels ill.

I think schools need to remember kids are human and perhaps deserve to be treated in the same way as themselves when feeling ill.

mrz Sun 09-Dec-12 09:22:58

They are for single days bisjo

difficultpickle Sun 09-Dec-12 00:55:38

Were they for periods of illness of less than 7 days mrz? If so I'm surprised as our GP wouldn't according to the long list in the waiting room. I'm surprised school would bother to ask unless attendance is poor.

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 22:34:05

No ivykate I don't think a parent keeping a sick child at home is the same as truancy. I do think keeping a child at home is non attendance in the eyes of the law.

As I've told you before I don't know if the child was or wasn't sick ivykate you?
I don't know the mum or the child and have never claimed they are personal friends, acquaintances. The case was reported in the press as were the cases I linked to

ivykaty44 Sat 08-Dec-12 22:25:18

mr you never answered the question and seem to think truancy is the same as a parents keeping a sick child at home. Every single link you put up was about truancy, this thread is about sickness from school and parents being fined for not producing proof that there child was sick. Children need to be at home when sick, not bundled in with truanting children, which is what you have done.

So where is this woman that kept her child home from school sick and was then sent to prison for not paying a fine for not producing a certificate from her gp to say her child was sick/ill - she doesn't exist and that is why you don't want to answer the question.

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 22:10:53

bisjo we have two families who are asked to produce doctors certificates and they are not charged

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 22:09:59

As you have stated your child has a great attendance record so is it likely that you will need to produce a certificate ...

RaisinBoys Sat 08-Dec-12 22:06:20

Direct employment of EWO's is now quite common Mrz particulary in areas with hard/soft federations and clusters, so I would question your "most schools" statement.

Can't be doing with your sarcasm and defensiveness so it's time for me to sign off this thread.

Thanks everyone else for your informative and/or supportive comments.

We'll continue what we do now - school when well, home when not. GP if required. GP's notes? Hell no!

difficultpickle Sat 08-Dec-12 22:06:07

I would imagine the GP would charge for a sick certificate that is issued outside the norm of less than 7 days illness. It doesn't take a minute for the school to check the pupil's attendance record and moderate their instructions accordingly. What an utter waste of time.

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 22:00:05

probably because they have had their wrists slapped in the past for not investigating every absence

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:58:57

No RaisinBoys it proves nothing other than the school is taking it's responsibility to follow the law seriously

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:57:50

Once upon a time there was a mother who didn't send her child to school. When the wicked headteacher asked her to prove where her child had been she refused. The wicked headteacher sent the big bad EWO around to issue a fine but the mother refused to pay so the wicked headteacher took her to court where the judge decided to send her to prison. And they all lived happily ever after. The End

RaisinBoys Sat 08-Dec-12 21:57:05

No it's about being asked to produce a doctor's certificate to prove the child is ill.

So Mrz a GP's certificate proves that a child is ill?


What, even if it is issued post illness, because one is unable to get an appointment during the actual illness and the child no longer has any symptoms?

Oh please!

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:54:19

Your question has been answered ivykate ...I'm afraid I'm not privy to the woman's life story

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:51:39

RaisinBoys my post re EWO was to radicalsub and if you read says "In most schools" not In RaisinBoys child's school or In ALL schools

RaisinBoys Sat 08-Dec-12 21:48:47

"In most schools the letters would be generated by the EWO centrally with LEA data not by the school"

Mrz As I said up the thread our EWO is directly employed by the school (in conjunctionn with 3 others) - She reviews the registers at school every fortnight and then sends out badly written, ill judged letters.

Local procedure with the letters coming from the school. No reference to LA.

ivykaty44 Sat 08-Dec-12 21:48:00

Possibly you don't want to answer the question I have now asked twice, I shall leave it as it is becoming clear you are not either able to answer the question or don't want to.

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:40:36

Have you ever asked a doctor for a note to prove your child had an appointment ivykate?

mrz Sat 08-Dec-12 21:39:13

No it's about being asked to produce a doctor's certificate to prove the child is ill.

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