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To be pissed off with school attendance awards.

(127 Posts)
FortyDoorsToNowhere Wed 23-Oct-13 21:45:14

I hate it, a child can't help getting ill or can not get to school on time as it down to the adult taking them.
then there are children who have appointments, such as SALTS or paediatrician which are often difficult to rearrange.

What pisses me off is that my son has many appointments, so he will never get 100% attendance and never gets these awards.

aibu to think attendance awards should be banned in school.

Misspixietrix Fri 25-Oct-13 22:32:13

YNBU!! Our School has just changed its policy to weekly awards instead of monthly. The kids with the 100% are likely to be the ones that come in half dead and spread the Lurgy around attendance IMO.

treesntrees Fri 25-Oct-13 20:58:13

At my eldest three children's primary school there was an annual prize giving where every child got a prize. As well as the usual best at maths etc there were prizes for things like always being cheerful, holding the door open for a teacher, being kind etc. You get the picture. It was such a pleasure to see the look of pride on each child's face as they went up for their prize. Admittedly it was a very small school but in a large school it could surely be done by having prize giving for different sections at a time.

grin @ breathslowly

breatheslowly Fri 25-Oct-13 17:55:42

Couldn't we cut the crap and have a "you don't have feckless parents" award. I guarantee that the teachers could accurately identify who should get them.

Reastie Fri 25-Oct-13 12:55:16

YANBU. I've always hated these, like rewarding those that either happened to not be particularly ill one year or who went to school anyway and passed it around to everyone else very generously . I remember some classmates getting these and feeling really bad that I had dared to be ill and have time off school.

PatoBanton Fri 25-Oct-13 12:52:44

SEA you're in such a strop these days grin

tiggytape Fri 25-Oct-13 12:50:29

have any of you written to the county council to complain about this or just bleat on mn occasionally about it

Of course. One of my DC's school doesn't do attendance awards. The other one does but, in line with equality legislation, discounts any days lost attending hospital appointments directly related to disability.

Last term alone we had 7 or 8 such days and yet got a shiny attendance award. Which is eqully stupid as well. I am very glad that all the non-disabled children who happened to catch a sick bugs did actually take time off and spared us even more time off school so I don't see why they should get left out either. Maybe a special 'responsible school citizen badge' or something for them?

It is frankly ridiculous. The people who like duvet days and take to their beds for the merest sniffle don't care anyway. The people who are responsible enough to care about attendance are the ones responsible enough to obey the 48 hour rule so cannot do both. And the ones with disabled children may care about attendance or not care but cannot do a lot about consultant appointments that always seem to run at 11am or 2pm on a Tuesday!

cory Fri 25-Oct-13 09:02:56

For every parent I know who keeps their child off with a sniffle, I could think of another one who sends them in with a careless "oh, I'm sure it's only something he ate, he hasn't thrown up since this morning".

A friend of mine told me she had seen met an acquaintance at a softplay party and she had mentioned cheerfully that her ds had thrown up a couple of times that day. It turned out later that he had concussion: he had fallen and hit his head that morning and his mother knew about it. But didn't put two and two together and was the kind of person who prided herself on her brisk, no-nonsense attitude.

PatoBanton Fri 25-Oct-13 08:52:55

Often parents who will flout the 48hr rule need no encouragement to do so, thus making a lot of other children ill while their child's attendance looks great.

Rewarding this sort of attitude however is a very poor idea.

It is better that one child stays at home for two days than that they come into school and ensure that 6 or 7? other children have to miss two days each. (those with conscientious parents)

cory Fri 25-Oct-13 08:47:55

FortyDoors, plenty of children are in the same situation but also have to struggle with medical conditions which mean they could die if they catch ordinary childhood diseases- and yet the law says they have to be in school. Which means they are totally dependent on the responsible attitude of other parents. Life isn't fair. But there are degrees of unfairness.

FortyDoorsToNowhere Fri 25-Oct-13 08:43:08

Have read the thread and some amazing responses.

My son is not academic and he would be good at sports if he could cope in group activities. ( he is ASD)

I wish just once he could win an award, instead of struggling every thing in life. I just want to scream life for him is just so unfair

ChazDingle Fri 25-Oct-13 08:37:29

We didn't lose the work bonus for maternity appointments. For other appointments we have to take them out of work time anyway, or take flexitime or holiday so they wouldn't be sick time anyway.

At school if you are off unnecessarily it doesn't effect anyone else only the childs education (which is obviously important) but if you are sick at work it puts pressure on others which is not fair if you're not really ill.

cory Fri 25-Oct-13 08:32:12

WhoNickedMyName Wed 23-Oct-13 21:55:19

I find the people who are against these are the ones whose children are unlikely, for whatever reason, to ever get one."

Some have children with compromised immune systems who will get into serious trouble if other parents are encouraged to send in their vomiting or poxy children.

The child who wins a race isn't actually putting somebody else at risk.

MollyWhuppie Fri 25-Oct-13 08:18:51

I have friends who will give their children days off at the drop of a hat - for the slightest sniffle - and I think it teaches them that attendance isn't important.

They have just started reception and I think when their children do not get the certificate at the end of the year they will feel bad that their child missed out, and will make more of an effort next year with attendance.

I think there are quite a few parents like that around, and I think they are the ones who the certificates are aimed at - to prevent unnecessary absences and boost attendance.

southeastastra Fri 25-Oct-13 08:09:49

have any of you written to the county council to complain about this or just bleat on mn occasionally about it

Sirzy Fri 25-Oct-13 08:07:23

I don't buy the "but some children will never get an award for maths" type argument. Most primary schools reward EFFORT rather than achievement for those types of awards so actually it should be possible for any child to be in with a chance of winning.

Rewarding improved attendance is better than expecting 100% attendance but still IMO a flawed system for the child with a chronic condition.

Gileswithachainsaw Fri 25-Oct-13 08:06:34

Improved attendance awards? shock

That's almost worse. Well done for your asthma not flaring up this term hmm

It's just rubbing their nose in it

jamdonut Fri 25-Oct-13 08:04:47

Letters went out the other day saying nits are no longer a valid excuse for absence!! Probably because you can treat them with Hedrin overnight.

jamdonut Fri 25-Oct-13 08:02:46

Our school also has IMPROVED attendance a child who has had time off for,say, chronic illness can achieve this if they have a better term or year.

Choccy84 Thu 24-Oct-13 20:06:37


I worked at a crazy school where they gave out attendance certificates to staff as well!! Weird. You can't help being ill and I'd rather people didn't come into work if they had norovirus or something.

hackmum Thu 24-Oct-13 19:53:47

I don't understand the point of these awards. Schools are always telling you not to bring your child in if it has chicken pox/D&V/nits, but surely this is encouraging you to bring them in regardless?

DD's primary used to give awards for things like improvement, or effort, or even (for the little ones) helping a new child settle in.

hels71 Thu 24-Oct-13 19:46:18

DDs school give certificates for 95% or more attendance. The school I work in give 100% attendance and improved attendance. The child we had who was seriously ill got an award for being in as often as he could.

tiggytape Thu 24-Oct-13 19:37:46

..and I would argue being excluded from a class party or being blamed for the whole class missing out on a treat is a punishment as well.

tiggytape Thu 24-Oct-13 19:36:35

PurpleGirly - I am glad that exceptional circumstances include disabled children who have appointments that cannot take place outside school hours. I wasn't sure if you meant one off exceptional circumstances (death in the family) or whether you also meant children with chronic or ongoing medical issues.

complexnumber: Some workplaces have a bonus systems.
Nobody is punished but some employees get an extra reward.

The law says that any such systems must make all reasonable allowances for disabled people so they have the chance of getting the bonus too eg if it is attendance based then all hospital appointments directly related to their disability must be discounted because they are unavoidable and related to a disability which gives this employee special protection in law to have exceptions made for them

Schools should at the very least match what all workplaces must do by law. In fact they are legally obliged to as well but some to think they don't have to.

complexnumber Thu 24-Oct-13 18:38:34

No one's child is being punished.

Some children are being rewarded.

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