Benefits of regular attendance
Isle of Anglesey County Council recognises that regular school attendance has a positive effect on children and young people and a strong impact on learner outcomes, standards and progression.
Within this, regular attendance supports the development of literacy and numeracy skills, and on the conceptual understanding needed for further study and success in the workplace.
Analysis shows that examination outcomes link strongly to attendance rates, for example, where a modest increase in absence can lower outcomes. Lessons missed can mean missing key information, skills and ideas.
Social skills, confidence and self-esteem: wellbeing
Good attendance also has a positive effect on wellbeing. Establishing good attendance patterns from an early age is vital for social development.
For example, the more time a child spends with other children in the classroom and as part of broader school-organised activities, the more chance they have of making friends, of feeling included, and of developing social skills, confidence and self-esteem.
Very negative effects of absence from school
On the other hand, extended absence from school is linked with behavioural and social problems.
These effects can be long lasting and can affect a young person’s mental health and their long-term life chances.
Absences can start a negative cycle, where learners start to be absent for reasons such as bullying or not coping with schoolwork, with prolonged absence only likely to make the situation harder to resolve.
The inter-relationship between attendance and wellbeing is considered so strong that attendance is often considered a proxy measure for learner wellbeing. We ask parents to raise any concerns as early as possible with the school and engage with them in improving attendance.
Education Welfare Service (EWS)
On behalf Isle of Anglesey County Council, the Education Welfare Service (EWS) provides support for schools, learners and parents to ensure regular attendance and address problems relating to absence.
The service liaises with other agencies and provides an important link between home and school, helping parents and teachers to work in partnership.
What you can do as a parent
Take an interest
Take an active interest in your child’s school life and work. Talk regularly with your child about school and how they feel about it.
They are more likely to attend if they feel supported and that their worries are listened to. Attend parent’s evenings and other school events when possible.
Make sure your child is on-time
Make sure your child is punctual to school or to catch the school transport to school. Praise good attendance; even small successes, such as going in promptly, even when the first lesson is their worst.
Know routines of the school day to avoid issues, such as have they got their PE kit?
Reporting an absence
Phone school on the first day of absence to tell them why your child is absent, and when you expect them to return.
Putting the school number in your phone can save you time. Ensure that you know the school routine for telling you about an absence.
Make sure that your child only misses school for reasons which are unavoidable or agreed and understood by the school.
Booking holidays during school time
Avoid booking family holidays during school time.
If it is not possible to avoid then you must talk to the school and get an answer before prior to booking a holiday.
If there is a problem with your child’s attendance
Talk to your child
If there is a problem with your child’s attendance, talk calmly to your child and listen to the explanation. There is always an explanation. It may not impress you, but it counted enough with your child to make them stop going to school.
Be particularly watchful and supportive in the run up to tests and aware of coursework deadlines. Help them catch up with missed work, a missed day doesn’t have to mean missed work.
Looking for the reason for not going to school is important.
Talk to the school - you are not alone
Talk to the school if you are concerned that your child may be reluctant to go to school. They may be able to help and support you and your child and resolve issues. You are not alone.