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Attendance Policy and Procedures

Attendance Policy & Procedures

As stated in the School Education Act 1999 students are required to attend the school they are enrolled in on every day that it is open for instruction except in certain cases. The school must account for every absence of every student and record the reason in the roll book. All students who are absent from school must provide a letter/diary note from their parent or caregiver explaining the reason for the absence. 

Certificate of illness may be required. In the case of unexplained absence of more than ten days (cumulative) the student will be sent a letter from the school indicating an intention to suspend or terminate enrolment. 

The information which follows is designed to clarify aspects of attendance including: 
  • Acceptable and unacceptable reasons for absence. 
  • Responsibilities as a caregiver. 
  • School procedures for following up absences. 
  • School procedures for following up lateness. 

Acceptable And Unacceptable Reasons For Student Absences

Acceptable reasons for student absences are:

  • Sickness 
  • Danger of being affected by an infectious or contagious disease. 
  • Temporary or permanent infirmity. 
  • Unavoidable and sufficient cause, e.g. 
    • bereavement within the family or of a close friend; or 
    • family trauma. 
  • Attending a school organised activity, e.g. excursion, camp, work experience, Cultural event. 

Examples of unacceptable reasons for absence are:

  • Truancy. 
  • Shopping expeditions with or without caregiver. 
  • Haircuts. 
  • Helping at home or at parent / caregivers place of work. 
  • Part-time or casual work (including travel to and from such work). 
  • Appointments which could be made out of school hours (including driving lessons / tests).
  • Excessive time for appointments which are avoidable. 
  • Holidays 

Parent / Caregivers Responsibilities Regarding Student Absences

It is the Parent/Caregivers responsibility to ensure that their children are enrolled in and attend a school every day, unless there are acceptable reasons for absence. Parent/Caregivers are asked to notify the school of any absence before 8.30am on the day of the absence.

Short-term absences - 1 or 2 days

Parent/Caregivers are asked to provide a written note, detailing the reason for absence, on the day of return to school.

Long-term absences - 3 or more days

Parent/caregivers are asked to contact the school before the absence, if possible, or on the third day at the latest to explain the absence. In addition, a written note, stating the reason for the absence needs to be provided on the day of return to school. If the reason is sickness, caregivers are expected to provide a Doctor's Certificate (for 3 days or more).

Very long-term absences

Parent/caregivers are asked to discuss with the Principal the implications of long-term absences from the school, before firm plans are made. When students are unavoidably absent for a long period of time, where possible the school will provide details of work for students to go on with, if requested to do so. 

Please note that neither the school nor caregivers have the authority to vary the attendance requirements as detailed in the Education Act 1999.

College Procedures for Following up Unacceptable Student Absences

  1. Where an absence is proposed, or has occurred, and the reason is not acceptable such as for sporting events or holidays, the parent/caregiver will be asked to speak to the Assistant Principal about the absence. 
  2. If absences are deemed excessive or continue on a regular basis, after the school has discussed the matter and obtained assurances from the parent/caregiver, the school will notify the local District Education Office Retention and Attendance Officer. 
  3. If there is no improvement in attendance the school may suspend or terminate the student’s enrolment. 

Students Who Are Late To College

  1. Teachers input absentees from their roll group on MAZE during form between 8:50am and 9:00am Secondary and 8:45am and 8:50 for Primary
  2. Students who are late to College or to the first scheduled lesson are required to report directly to Student Services on arrival. Ie After 8:50am primary and 9:00am Secondary. 
  3. The Student will be issued with a Late Slip that is to be handed to the teacher upon arrival at the class. 
  4. Persistently late students will be referred to the Assistant Principal and have such other consequences applied as are deemed appropriate by the Assistant Principal. 

Examples of acceptable reasons for lateness are:

  • Accident on way to school. 
  • Transport breakdown on way to school. 
  • Transperth or College bus late. 
  • Other unavoidable and sufficient reasons. 
Parents/Caregivers are asked to provide a written note, preferably in the Homework Diary. If no note is written on the day of lateness, then a note must be shown to the teacher on the next day.

Examples of unacceptable reasons for lateness are:

  • Truancy. 
  • Sleeping in. 
  • Just late (no reason given). 
  • Haircut. 
  • Shopping. 
  • Appointments which could have been made out of school hours (including driving lesson/test). 
  • Other avoidable and insufficient reasons. 

College Action for Unacceptable Reasons

  • Detention for second and third offences. 
  • Referral to Assistant Principal/Deputy Principal/Principal for third and subsequent offence for more serious consequences. 
NOTE: Lateness on compassionate grounds, e.g. family trauma, will be followed up by the Pastoral Care Team for the sake of the welfare of students. In these cases detention will not be given.

Procedures For Following Up Unexplained Student Absences & Monitoring Attendance Issues

Teachers input absentees from their roll group on MAZE during form between 8:50am and 9:00am Secondary and 8:45am and 8:50 for Primary. 

Student Services take messages from voicemail and process all incoming calls.

At approximately 9:30am once all absentees notifications and reasons for absentees have been processed Student Services contact parents of students with unexplained absentees via SMS where applicable or via phone where SMS notification is not applied. Messages are left on answering machines/message bank where there is no answer asking parents to return our call. 

Absence reports are emailed to all secondary staff at intervals throughout the day. Times for these reports are 9:10am, 10:40am and 1:40pm. Primary absentees are emailed through to support staff once a day. 

During the course of the day, if students names are not on the absentee list and the student is not present in any module the teacher concerned calls student services immediately to advise of the student absence. Student Services will communicate this to either Assistant Principal or DeputyPrincipal if the student’s location is unknown. 

Staff are also required to notify student services if a student appears on the absentee report but is present in their class to ensure the report remains accurate and up to date throughout the day.

Monitoring Attendance Issues

Concerns about prolonged or unexplained absence are communicated (either by email or at Staff Meetings) by Student Services and Classroom teachers to the Deputy Principal and the relevant Assistant Principals. The Assistant Principals are responsible to communicate these concerns to parents and where necessitated by legislation to inform relevant authorities.