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Note from attendance officer

(113 Posts)
Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 16:47:25

I'm quite irritated to have received a note from the attendance officer and I'd like to understand the possible repercussions of lower than 'ideal' attendance please.

My son has just started Reception. He came down with a terrible cold on a Sunday with a fever, bad cough and very runny nose. He was off for Monday and Tuesday.

I sent him back Wednesday and Thursday but I misjudged it as by Thursday he'd relapsed and I had to leave early to collect him. He was off on the Friday and Monday. By Tuesday he was much better so he returned to school, only had a cough and has been in school as normal since.

The letter says some tosh about 'hope his attendance improves' but acknowledges he's been sick too.

What are you supposed to do? Send them in sick and keep attendance high just to appease the officer?

It's really narked me. The only way his attendance could've been improved would've been if I sent him in sick which is directly against their guidelines.

Urgh. I hate all this shit.

admission Fri 06-Oct-17 16:52:34

It is the school applying its version of trying to make sure that they maximise attendance, which I agree with, but without applying a level of sense to whom the letter is sent.
I would ignore the letter as you are quite happy with the action you took to ensure your child was off for the minimum of time.

Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 16:55:41

Ok, thanks. I just think it's daft to acknowledge obvious sickness but to act like attendance could still be improved.

Laurat859 Fri 06-Oct-17 17:01:29

The school I work at sends out a standard letter like that to anybody who's attendance drops below a certain percentage. I know it seems daft when the absence was genuine and explained, but I guess the school has to be seen to be doing something about poor attendance...no matter the reason.

Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 17:06:46

I can tell already I'm going to find the school years challenging. At my son's school I'm yet to see evidence of common sense at work and this has just got my back up.

Glumglowworm Fri 06-Oct-17 17:08:28

This early in the year it doesn't take much to knock their attendance percentage down below "acceptable".

Ignore the letter. Your child is only 4 and was genuinely ill.

MargotsDevil Fri 06-Oct-17 17:11:38

Remember it works on percentages so this early in the year any non-attendance will appear to be higher. Understand why you may be frustrated though!

2014newme Fri 06-Oct-17 17:11:41

It's a standard letter.
They know he can't attend school with a fever and they don't want him to. They are forced to show they are acting on lower attendance though so they gave to do it. Bin the letter and forget about it.

JassyRadlett Fri 06-Oct-17 17:11:54

At my son's school I'm yet to see evidence of common sense at work and this has just got my back up.

Unfortunately I don’t think it gets better. I seem to have developed a thicker skin for the nonsense though - though the flip side is that I have a thicker skin in relation to pleas from the school....

Liadain Fri 06-Oct-17 17:11:58

It's probably an automatic reaction when the childs attendance drops below a certain point. They are doing it to cover their own backs, so if you turn out to have ridiculously low attendance they have a paper trail alerting you of this fact.

I don't see why you have to dive into the typical MN "livid and fuming" mode about it. If it isn't going to be a long term problem, getting a simple note is fine surely.

JassyRadlett Fri 06-Oct-17 17:15:42

I don't see why you have to dive into the typical MN "livid and fuming" mode about it.

confused How’d you get from ‘quite irritated’ and ‘really narked’ to ‘livid and fuming’?

Was it the OP you wanted to read, versus the one you actually did?

Tomorrowillbeachicken Fri 06-Oct-17 17:15:59

Throw it in the bin

Liadain Fri 06-Oct-17 17:20:25

No, I know those aren't the words she said Jassey. I used them as an example - the amount of posts along these lines that contain livid, fuming etc is fascinating!

Quite happy to word it as "the typical MN reaction of irritated and narked", makes no diff to me, I still think the OP is being overly precious about it.

JassyRadlett Fri 06-Oct-17 17:24:59

Quite happy to word it as "the typical MN reaction of irritated and narked", makes no diff to me, I still think the OP is being overly precious about it.

Outsstanding. Typical MN hyperbole mode is my bugbear, particularly when used to belittle another poster.

She’s annoyed by a pointless letter, and asked what the implications of it are and whether she should do anything about it. It is irritating and counterproductive for schools to put parents’ backs up by sending out pointless letters admonishing them for providing responsible care for their kids.

Seems fair enough.

Ttbb Fri 06-Oct-17 17:28:50

Send back a few pages torn out if catch 22-preferably the court martial passages.

Liadain Fri 06-Oct-17 17:29:12

Aye well, I feel it'd be fair enough to accept that the school 'tosh' probably feels like tosh to them too, and doesn't need an ott reaction of not seeing common sense in the school, knowing she'll hate school years already and it all getting her back up. All over a note. Hyperbole, eh...

SuburbanRhonda Fri 06-Oct-17 17:32:38

Send back a few pages torn out if catch 22-preferably the court martial passages.

hmm

JassyRadlett Fri 06-Oct-17 17:34:48

All over a note.

Not quite - a note in addition to other things that have given OP the cumulative impression that a common sense approach isn’t high on their list of priorities.

Which you’ve got to admit is quite a feat for the first month of school. Just as likely the school may be rubbish at communicating the reasons for why it does what it does.

A letter that acknowledges a parent has done the right thing by keeping an unwell child at home, while at the same time admonishing the absence and saying they trust attendance will improve, is so deeply illogical that for those who aren’t yet hardened by the school system that it does make you wonder if these are the people you want in charge of your children’s education....

Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 17:35:17

Thanks (most of you) - it just seems ridiculous given how early we are in the term - any percentages won't be of a significant level after such a short time as PP said.

Since you're the only one with such a violent reaction to my irritation, Liadin, I'll treat your comments with the same disdain you treat mine.

JassyRadlett Fri 06-Oct-17 17:36:49

Thanks (most of you) - it just seems ridiculous given how early we are in the term - any percentages won't be of a significant level after such a short time as PP said.

Yes, this! It’s not just their grasp of a common sense, proportional approach, it’s their grasp of flipping maths.

SuburbanRhonda Fri 06-Oct-17 17:37:33

Is your child already 5, OP?

Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 17:40:18

Thank you Jassy.

Re: why I'm concerned about 'common sense' I posted previously because I was in a state as my son wasn't able to do much of the work the school expected before starting Reception.

After posting here it became apparent their 'requirements' were not age appropriate and not in line with NC expectations.

Unsurprisingly I'm not convinced they're not going to repeat this type of nonsense.

This 'note' has just given me another 'FFS' moment.

Moanyoldcow Fri 06-Oct-17 17:41:16

Suburban - no - still 4! So his attendance isn't even compulsory!

SuburbanRhonda Fri 06-Oct-17 17:44:59

In which case I would ignore the letter. Education welfare in my area wouldn't get involved until the are of statutory school age.

In the school's defence, they have to show they are doing everything possible to improve attendance or they could fail their Ofsted.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Fri 06-Oct-17 18:00:48

Only compulsory term after five so no one is compulsory yet.

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