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(13 Posts)
lou4791 Mon 12-Nov-12 23:30:29

I am concerned about the way my DS's school has recorded some of his non attendances and wonder whether it is worth pushing for them to be changed.

Due to severe anxiety, my DS had a week off school at the beginning of the autumn term ( with visits to GP, councellor, and a referrel to CAHMS) followed by 2 days of physical illness a few weeks later. The school was kept informed throughout the absenses. The registration certificate for this half term shows that these absenses, which I considered to be illness ( mental/physical), have been recorded as unauthorised.

As my DS is now thinking of sixth form college applications, I am worried that low attendance will have a negative effect on his chances of gaining a place. Is this a legitimate worry?

Does anyone have any experience/ advice about requesting that the classification of non attendances are changed?

LadyMaryChristmas Mon 12-Nov-12 23:38:49

Did you send in a note when he returned? It's usual procedure to call them on the day of the absence, and send a note in when your child returns to school. If there's no note they will record the absence as unauthorised.

lou4791 Tue 13-Nov-12 00:06:51

Oh goodness. My son is 16 and in all these years of schooling, i've never been asked for a note to back up the phone call, and never had a problem with how absenses have been recorded. But maybe you are right and that's why there has been a problem this term. Do you think they will change the recordings in retrospect if requested, bearing in mind possible implications for sixth form applications?

lou4791 Tue 13-Nov-12 00:07:37


mnistooaddictive Tue 13-Nov-12 12:05:00

As a secondary teacher4, every school I have worked in has expected notes to back up phone call - phone calls are too easy to fake for teenagers. It is still possible to chamge it, just phone up and ask how it can be done. The final decision though does rest with the school and if they decide it is unauthorised, you cant make them change that.

LadyMaryChristmas Tue 13-Nov-12 13:14:39

You should ask them. Ds's school send an attendance record out at the end of every term. If I've forgotten to send in a note they let me know so I can send one in. It's standard practice in all schools to send in a note, sounds like yours have been a little sloppy in the past.

coppertop Tue 13-Nov-12 13:46:37

Our secondary school doesn't expect a note afterwards.

Did you contact the school each day your ds was off? If you only called on the first day and said he would be off all week, it may be that the rest of the week was classed as unauthorised.

Madmog Tue 13-Nov-12 14:10:59

My daughter has just gone into Y7 and has had one day off. We have to phone in with reason for being off, anticipated date of return and follow this up with a note. The school will phone by 11am if they haven't heard from you or had an anticipated return date. Maybe not all schools do this, but if your son was absent without a good reason (in their eyes), I would expect them to phone and check on his whereabouts and the reason, given all the child protection issues that have to be taken into consideration these days.

My daughter has just gone into Y7 and has had one day off. She was asked for the note as soon as she walked into her tutor's classroom. It might be worth having a word with the school to see why they've been recorded as unauthorised.

lou4791 Tue 13-Nov-12 14:13:25

I called each day and myself and DS had a meeting with the deputy head during that week too in order to discuss the problems and the best way to ease back into school quickly.
Does anyone know if attendance records are definitely viewed and taken into consideration by prospective sixth form colleges?

LoopsInHoops Tue 13-Nov-12 14:16:56

Serously, don't worry about it.

1. 6th forms are VERY unlikley to look.
2. Ring school and rectify, with one note covering all absences. Common procedure, don't worry. School don't decide what is illness and what isn't, you do.

cory Wed 14-Nov-12 12:19:18

Dd is in the same boat and also making college applications. We have spoken to all the colleges about her situation and what they are all saying is, they wouldn't discriminate against a pupil on grounds of health/mental health issues but they would want to know about it asap so they can offer support. And what both we and dd reckon is, if you have anxiety issues there is no point in getting into a college that would be unsupportive in a crisis.

Startail Wed 14-Nov-12 12:46:37

Primary expected notes, which they then didn't read the dates on and still marked as unauthorised. They even wanted notes when they had sent her home. Small school they knew she was ill, notes totally unnecessary.

Secondary seem rather relaxed, but I'm guessing they know DD1 is unlikely to be pulling tricks. Quite mad that they have 15x as many kids and are less painful.
Need to write back notes for

Startail Wed 14-Nov-12 12:47:24

Ignore last lineblush

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