Attendance at The Milton Keynes Academy

The attendance target for all students at The Milton Keynes Academy is 97.5%.

If a student has 5 or more days absence in an academic year, they will fail to meet their individual attendance target.

It is important that every student attends school every day and on time to give themselves the very best chance of success. Research demonstrates clearly that students who are not in school are less likely to be able to take full advantage of the learning and social opportunities available to them.

If your child misses just one morning of school a week their attendance will drop to 90%. This equates to a student missing 19 days of education in a year, which research shows could result in dropping one or more grades at GCSE.

We take absence seriously and target intervention with students whose attendance falls below 95%.

Unexplained Absence

Parents and Carers must contact The Academy every day that a child is absent from school to provide a reason for the absence. The Academy will make a decision on whether the absence is authorised or not. If we do not receive contact from parents or carers, we consider this to be a safeguarding concern. We use an automated message system that texts parents to request explanations for absence. If a response is not received emails, phone calls and letters are sent home to resolve reasons for absence and reduce the likelihood of future absence. If no response is received, absences will be recorded as unauthorised.

Persistent Absence (PA)

The Department for Education consider any student with attendance of 90% or below to be a Persistent Absentee. The Academy provides a range of support to prevent students from becoming Persistent Absentees and will work closely with students and parents/carers to achieve this. However, where interventions prove unsuccessful and the majority of absence is unauthorised, parents and carers will be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice or may be referred to court and legally prosecuted.

Term Time Holidays

The Milton Keynes Academy follows Department for Education Policy by not authorising holidays during term time, unless there are ‘exceptional circumstances’. We do not authorise holidays during term time because we recognise that such absence negatively affects attainment. If a student has five days or more of unauthorised holiday, parents and carers will received a Fixed Penalty Notice. The updated policy does not allow schools to authorise any absence of five days or more during school time. Head teachers would not be expected to class any term time holiday as exceptional. Fixed Penalty Notices will be issued, at £60-00 per parent and per child. Therefore, a two parent family with two children would receive a fine of £240-00.

The links between good attendance and academic success are clear and beyond argument. Here at The Milton Keynes Academy we do all that we can to promote good attendance. All staff work closely with students to make clear the message that attending well and being on time, will lead to higher levels of attainment and greater employment prospects.

We have always been able to rely on the support of our parents and carers and I know we will be able to do so as we implement these important changes.

To view the Code of Conduct for Penalty Notices for absences, please click on the link below.