Children left out of attendance treat due to illness, including medical.

(57 Posts)
ralphlauren Wed 01-Jul-15 20:57:27

My DS has Asthma and another condition which sometimes stops him attending school (or school have called for him to he collected)

Do you think that he and other children with medical conditions be given any special allowance so they do not miss out on treats/special events because they have not reached the % required?

I teach and my school do not follow this reward system. I would just like another perspective on this.
TIA

Sirzy Wed 01-Jul-15 20:58:43

I think better than any special allowances would be simply not having the 'treats' in the first place!

ralphlauren Wed 01-Jul-15 21:00:39

I totally agree.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:03:22

What sort of treats and special events?

I think it's terrible to exclude children from things because they have suffered (sometimes ongoing, painful, limiting) health conditions. I don't understand it at all.

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:03:31

DS1 has a chronic condition which requires regular paediatric outpatient appointments. He has never achieved 100% attendance because of his OP appointments, even when he's been present for every other session in the academic year. The OP appointments are notified to the school in advance, so it's hardly as if they are unexplained absences.

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:05:31

I should have added that his school does certificates presented by the head teacher in one of the final assemblies of the school year to reward children with 100% attendance. They make a real song and dance about it. DS2 (no chronic health condition) got one at the end of reception year and DS1 was gutted.

Supervet Wed 01-Jul-15 21:09:22

A friends school take them out on a paid trip to an attraction I.e zoo/theme park etc. Really makes me bloody angry Tbh

ralphlauren Wed 01-Jul-15 21:12:56

Dust, you could have written this thread for me. My DS is the same with medical appointments and to be quiet honesty don't trust them to look after him when he is ill whole new thread

The treat is a trip to the cinema to see the current movie and the other children stay in school and then badgered about attendance and how they could make the cut if they didn't stay off!

Viviennemary Wed 01-Jul-15 21:16:01

It does seem very unfair that children are penalised because they have illnesses. Write to your MP about it. Can't believe the children are kept behind and lectured about their attendance. That's very bad.

Springtimemama Wed 01-Jul-15 21:17:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Methe Wed 01-Jul-15 21:21:20

Rewarding children for something completely out of their control is madness. My Nephew was taken to Drayton manor because his attendance was 100% it makes me angry.. I have no idea what the school are thinking!

If my children's school started doing it I'd have something to say. I even object to the certificates. What's wrong with rewarding good behaviour, effort or improvement?

Sirzy Wed 01-Jul-15 21:27:01

What annoys me is it is much more of a challenge for DS to have his 86% attendance than it is for some children to get 100% attendance but the system is so fixated on number it doesn't see that.

Thankfully DS school just does certificate and box of chocolates for 100% which isn't as bad as a trip (although I have still pointed out the unfairness to the head)

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:27:29

Thing is when you're out of school for periods due to illness you already feel left out / excluded because of it. I spent a lot of time in childrens hosp and it was hard enough being away from friends / losing the relationships / missing out on loads of stuff / not knowing what had been going on + of course the pain of multiple medical procedures and then of course already being "different" with impaired mobility, to then say so because of that you can't come to the zoo (or whatever) would feel like a punishment and literally add insult to injury!

My children are both in rude health and would probably get certs but I woudn't support it at all it feels bizarre to me and really out of line.

cruikshank Wed 01-Jul-15 21:28:13

It's all a load of bullshit. Even if a child doesn't have a chronic condition (and my ds does, so he's never going to get that 100%), loads of absences from school are due to sick bugs etc. What would they rather - that the kid comes in and pukes all over the dining area? This whole attendance thing is way off-kilter. I actually know parents who, rather than booking an early morning appointment for their child, will purposely book one at 10 am so that they get their mark and it doesn't impact on their attendance figures. Which leads to much more time off school than if they were just 20 minutes late for the morning register.

Also, and I've said this before, but the real problem children re attendance are not being addressed at all by trips out for the poor wee blighters whose parents are so hell-bent on getting them a prize that they'll send them in with bronchiolitis. And having the odd day off here and there for the pukes and runs isn't going to impact on your education one iota. Rather, what needs to be addressed are those families whose kids miss a day here, a week there, another couple of days there, throughout the term because they aren't coping or have other external pressures on them with addiction/crime whatever. They are not touched at all by such initiatives, because they would never be able to get there anyway. That is where the real issue with attendance lies, and taking a bunch of kids to see the London Eye or whatever does fuck all do address it.

maskingtherealme Wed 01-Jul-15 21:30:02

I'm a teacher and my school did this. The reward is a shopping voucher every term.
I don't agree with it. Children should not be rewarded for attending school. They need to understand that school is important. And besides, at primary level, which is the age range I teach, it isn't the children's responsibility; it is the parents. So even with all the will in the world, some poor child will never make 100% because they have parents who fail to see the importance of education.
I also don't agree with it because it excludes children with medical conditions that require sessions, days, sometimes weeks away from school. The school now rewards children with an attendance of 97% and above but one little boy missed out because he contracted pneumonia and missed three weeks of school in the summer term on top of the couple of days he had for chest infections and sickness. So it was a case of "Tough luck Jack. Your were suffering from a serious illness so you don't get a certificate, put into the raffle for the shopping voucher or an end of year swim token".
Not fair.

WhirlpoolGalaxyM51 Wed 01-Jul-15 21:30:26

Yes true cruikshank so children are left out because they have been ill / because they have parents who for whatever reason aren't getting them into school.

Primary school children have no control over the latter and no-one has control over the former I don't understand it at all. It seems counter-intuitive and just, well, really really mean.

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:34:39

what needs to be addressed are those families whose kids miss a day here, a week there, another couple of days there, throughout the term because they aren't coping or have other external pressures on them with addiction/crime whatever. They are not touched at all by such initiatives, because they would never be able to get there anyway. That is where the real issue with attendance lies, and taking a bunch of kids to see the London Eye or whatever does fuck all do address it.

And if you are small child living in a chaotic home, you probably know - even at 5 or 6 - that you've got fuck all chance of going on the trip, as your parents aren't up to getting you in on time regularly and you are too little to do it yourself.

AndNowItsSeven Wed 01-Jul-15 21:34:48

28 Cruikshank at my dd's school you are told you must book an appointment at 10am rather than 8.30am so they get their mark.
I pointed out dc would miss more school but they insist that is the school rule.

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:35:05

x-post with Whirlpool...

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:36:47

at my dd's school you are told you must book an appointment at 10am rather than 8.30am so they get their mark.

Oh FFS. At most of the doctors surgeries around here, you ring at 8.30 in a mad scramble for appointments and you take whatever you can get. And for full-time working parents, you can probably make up the time for an early appointment, but would have to take a half day for a late morning one + commute.

Sirzy Wed 01-Jul-15 21:43:25

I love this idea you can pick and choose appointment times. That may work for run of the mill appointments but very few children with on going/chronic conditions have run of the mill appointments. You take what you are given!

cruikshank Wed 01-Jul-15 21:45:00

Whirlpool and dustbunny - agree completely. Not only is it mean, but it doesn't address the issue of non-attendance that falls outside of medical grounds. That issue could be addressed of course, with proper help and support and a multi-agency approach. But no, instead, let's give out certificates because that way we're seen to be doing something. And the kids who are ok in the first place get the benefit, while the poor little blighters who spend their days off standing on the street corner looking out for the police while their mum entertains clients at home are left to their own devices.

AndNowItsSeven, that is fucking crazy. What about people who work? I'm sure my boss would have something to say if I were two hours later into work than I needed to be just because I had to ensure my son got a mark in the register.

sanfairyanne Wed 01-Jul-15 21:52:06

i thought this was no longer allowed and they had to 'disallow' as it were abscences due to disability?

DustBunnyFarmer Wed 01-Jul-15 21:53:38

But my son's chronic illness doesn't fall within the disability definition. Doesn't mean it wouldn't be neglect if I stopped taking him to hospital appointments.

AndNowItsSeven Wed 01-Jul-15 21:59:14

Yes it's ridiculous, my dd has several chronic conditions. As I ore book the appointments at her hospital I due have some choice in times. I would prefer to take the 8.30 appointments so dd travels to the appointments ( 40 mins to children's hospital) out of school time but they said that is not acceptable. If her appointments are at 10am she would be back at school in time for her 1pm mark. School is slightly nearer to the hospital but it would still mean she would get to school at 8.45 and need picking up at 9.30.

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