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Attendance Matters


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There can be no doubt that habits that start early tend to stay for a very long time, so in essence seems like a logical thing to start monitoring. However, I can't help but feel that monitoring attendance at 3 and 4 will only identify families that are already deeply set in their ways, and that schools will readily recognise anyway.

 

The bigger question needs to be how do you reach out and help?

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like most of these articles it presents a very unbalanced view...one mp talking about school and the other talking about 3 and 4 year olds. There is evidence to suggest that pre-school children catch between 9 and 15 viruses in the first year at pre-school and we are very hot on ensuring that children who have tummy bugs/sickness do not come in for at least 48 hours after the last bout...unlike my childrens schools who dont seem to care and therefore bugs are spread quickly. I'm afraid i don't have evidence that truancy begins at this age...it certainly isn't my experience but maybe i'm unusual. I truly believe that parents should be free to take their children on outings and visits while thay are able.....if we feel children are missing pre-school for other reasons this would obviously be tackled but most of the time these children attend school regularly when the parents know they are going to BIG school and it suddenly seems important!!

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Most of our children attend regularly and we are really strict about sickness bugs etc. But it does annoy me when people just don't turn up, especially when supply cover is arranged and then you don't need them.

 

When parents are claiming the free entitlement they should make their best effort to attend otherwise they are wasting government money.

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We have been talking about the amount of time some children have off, but more from the point of view that some of our learning journey's are so empty! If a child only comes twice a week, then is sick or they go on holiday when they transfer to school there isn't much evidence to look at

 

Do any preschool playgroups show attendance anywhere in the children's folders?

eg sessions due / sessions attended

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Yes we used to have an attendance record which I added to the transfer documents for this reason... used to put number of days attended and number of sessions booked - had to do this as some of the documents said so little against others but if a child was attending 5 days a week all year and another 2 days this alone showed a difference in the document.. a few days off each month and it really did show..

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but surely if we go this way then we are saying that 'formal' education has to start at age 3 aren't we??...what happens with those children who don't attend anywhere are they very behind everyone else???

 

 

 

oh and just to add my children never did 5 days...we always had far too many others things to do like swimming and gym and feeding the ducks!!

Edited by finleysmaid
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umm interesting - we were only talking about this the other day about our vunerable families in the borough that children of these families miss lots of preschool and we should be monitoring their attendance. :huh:

 

As for the old holiday business - until airlines change thier pricing policies families will be taking thier children out of school and who can blame them. I am afraid i have been guilty of this in the past and will be again a few days before half term. :P

 

I remember once ringing my daughters school from the airport and having to put the phone down as a message came across the tanoy system - everyone laughed in the queue...... :ph34r: :ph34r: :ph34r:

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but surely if we go this way then we are saying that 'formal' education has to start at age 3 aren't we??...what happens with those children who don't attend anywhere are they very behind everyone else???

 

 

 

oh and just to add my children never did 5 days...we always had far too many others things to do like swimming and gym and feeding the ducks!!

 

I agree with all of what you say, however I am looking at this from our point of view as a setting, sending half empty learning journey's doesn't look good <_<

 

Ps - My children didn't do 5 sessions per week either :1b

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I don't look at it in the same way for me it just shows how many days they have attended out of those booked..

 

so those booked 2 days a week will have a lot fewer days due to attend (76) than those on 5 (190) so the attendance for the children shown was related to the days booked..this showed the difference in the amount in any LJ or transfer document -

 

but on the other side it did also show to us who had a lot of time not attending for one reason or another. Our LEA wanted us to have a letter for every time a child was absent, and they did check them on a funding audit, this backed up the funding we were receiving and the days attended..

 

it was something we always did, even before the funding or needing to show attendance to LEA.. it helped put any paperwork and amounts into perspective... and came to light one Ofsted when the inspector pulled out 2 LJ at random to look at, one was really enormous and the other sparse, it took a lot of explaining about the days each child attended, and was commented on in the report , so we became prepared and had figures for each child each term after that!

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When parents are claiming the free entitlement they should make their best effort to attend otherwise they are wasting government money.

 

It would be more of a waste to deny them the opportunity to spend quality time with a parent doing something special simply to keep up the attendance figures. I heartily agree that parents should let settings know if their child will not be attending but I can't agree with the view that being in an Early Years Setting is automatically better for the child than being with the family.

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I don't have a problem if parents don't want their full funded hours. Its there choice. I don't have a problem when parents take their child out for the odd day or take holidays in term time. I have done all of these things myself. When parents do this I ask them to bring back souveners to talk about BUT I think it is a different matter when a parent cannot be bothered to come out because it is raining etc or if the child has absences every week. Why bother to book them in in the first place. Parents who have to pay do not do this but when the child becomes a funded one all of a sudden things sometimes change.

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I don't have a problem if parents don't want their full funded hours. Its there choice.

 

But if that parent is using public funds to access that place don't they have a moral obligation to use it. Should the place be withdrawn if attendance is below a certain %? Fine if they don't come because they're paying for the space, but they shoulder the cost. Doesn't poor attendance = misuse of public funding if it was seen as a benefit payment.

 

Cx

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No what I mean is if a parent wants their child only to attend for 5 hours a week only book in for 5 hours a week in the first place. I always tell parents only to book in for the sessions that their child would attend regularly.So if parents want to do other things with their children they can give the place to someone else.If attendence goes below a certain percent I have withdrawn space.

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Aha! Yes I agree that there should be a commitment. I do know that early family habits of poor attendance can translate into non attendance as a matter of course as the child moves into Primary. (I spent years as the teacher responsible for attendance!!)

Cx

Edited by catma
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I don't look at it in the same way for me it just shows how many days they have attended out of those booked..

 

so those booked 2 days a week will have a lot fewer days due to attend (76) than those on 5 (190) so the attendance for the children shown was related to the days booked..this showed the difference in the amount in any LJ or transfer document -

 

but on the other side it did also show to us who had a lot of time not attending for one reason or another. Our LEA wanted us to have a letter for every time a child was absent, and they did check them on a funding audit, this backed up the funding we were receiving and the days attended..

 

it was something we always did, even before the funding or needing to show attendance to LEA.. it helped put any paperwork and amounts into perspective... and came to light one Ofsted when the inspector pulled out 2 LJ at random to look at, one was really enormous and the other sparse, it took a lot of explaining about the days each child attended, and was commented on in the report , so we became prepared and had figures for each child each term after that!

 

We have now decided to do this,

Inge how did you keep track of it??

I have visions of having to sit at my register for hours in summer counting how many days each child should have come against how many actually attended.

I'm sure this will be easy to do, just can't see it myself at the moment xD

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We have now decided to do this,

Inge how did you keep track of it??

I have visions of having to sit at my register for hours in summer counting how many days each child should have come against how many actually attended.

I'm sure this will be easy to do, just can't see it myself at the moment xD

 

we did it weekly/ monthly adding to a spreadsheet set up to do the adding up... names, days due, days attended...

 

or it could be work out days due to attend weeks x sessions and deduct days off... quick look through register was easy to show days off .. and again it was done monthly..

once used to it was 5 mins a week, or a bit longer each month..

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we did it weekly/ monthly adding to a spreadsheet set up to do the adding up... names, days due, days attended...

 

or it could be work out days due to attend weeks x sessions and deduct days off... quick look through register was easy to show days off .. and again it was done monthly..

once used to it was 5 mins a week, or a bit longer each month..

 

Of course! Thanks Inge

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