All children who are well enough should be in school. Absences have an impact on a child’s academic progress and their social and emotional well-being. The Headteacher cannot authorise absence for family holidays and any request for absences for exceptional circumstances must be made in advance in writing to the Headteacher. We will ask for evidence of exceptional circumstances. In the past this has included copies of wedding invitations, evidence of flight cancellations, letters from employers. Please co-operate with us if we ask for these. A request for absence to go skiing or to a festival will not be authorised, so please do not ask. We do not consider being able to buy cheap flights to be an exceptional circumstance.
If your child is ill you must contact us as soon as possible on the first day of absence explaining the reason for this. You may phone the school office, or use 'Study Bugs', which you can download here. https://studybugs.com/about/parents Please do not e-mail a member of staff even if you have their e-mail as they may not be in school on that day and the message may get lost.
There are times when we need to contact parents about lots of things, including absence, so we need to have your contact numbers at all times. If we are repeatedly unable to contact you during the school day this may lead to a safeguarding referral.
Under normal circumstances the school day starts at 8.55 and we expect your child to be in their classroom at that time. For revised times under Covid restrictions please see the temporary handbook. We also respectfully request that you vacate the school premises as soon as possible after settling your child so that we can secure the gates and safeguard the children.
You can find out more in our attendance policy.
Unfortunately there are sometimes circumstances beyond our control that mean the school cannot open to pupils or to groups of pupils. If this is the case we will communicate this as early as we possibly can, using Parent Mail. Please ensure we have up to date contact details for you. For closures due to Covid 19 we will have been in communication with Public Health.
We will also post information regarding closures on our website, and will send information via Twitter (@DownsInfants).
In the event of closure due to bad weather (e.g. snow), we will have communicated with Downs Junior School to ensure a co-ordinated approach, and details will also be available via local radio.