Measuring Attendance At Your School, Academy Or MAT

It is a matter of law that all schools, including independents, have to maintain an attendance register, taken both in the morning and afternoon.  Failure to do so could result in a hefty fine.  We thought we’d jot down a bit of helpful guidance to aid you in your endeavours.  Whilst all this is covered in the full government guidance, we’ve narrowed it down for you.

Engagement

At the heart of a successful attendance strategy is getting all parties involved and engaged in your processes.

  • Provide a clear vision that is understood by staff, teachers, pupils and families.
  • Stipulate the level of punctuality and attendance that is expected.
  • Highlight how absences pose a potential safeguarding risk.
  • Have a dedicated person responsible for attendance policy and measures.
  • Educate how poor attendance can affect attainment and education outcomes.
  • Report regularly to Governors and/or Board.

Consultation

  • Working with the families of pupils as well as the pupils themselves is crucial to improving attendance.
  • Ensure to build good relationships across the board, collaboration is the key.
  • Set clear expectations about what is expected from parents, carers, pupils and teachers.
  • Work closely with external agencies regarding vulnerable pupils.
  • Set clear parameters for communication from and to families, pupils, staff and agencies so all are kept notified when relevant.

Monitoring and Reporting

  • Accurately recording and monitoring the all attendance data on a daily, weekly, monthly or termly is essential.
  • Apply consistent processes and systems to record attendance.
  • Publish guidelines for the escalation procedure to ensure that everyone is aware how the process works.
  • Make sure that you are accurately reporting on attendance across school/year/class/teacher/pupil.
  • Analyse patterns of attendance across different parameters such as location, pupil premium or looked after children for example.
  • Keep track of these patterns so that you spot the early warning signs of any issues and can act proactively.

Wrapping It Up

At this point we could turn this article into a shameless plug for you to use our system, SchoolsBi, in your School, Academy or Multi-Academy Trust.  That isn’t how we work though.  We know that using your school data and analytics is key when implementing your Attendance strategy, but we’re pretty sure you already know this and have suffered through the limitations of reporting from your MIS already.  So why don’t you research what opportunities there are to use business intelligence to improve and streamline the way in which you work.  We’re all about making life easy at SchoolsBi, just get in touch if you’d like us to see if we can help.

Posted on May 7th 2021

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