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School Attendance -Covid -19 Update- September 2020

Derby Pride Academy are working in partnership with Derby City Council to welcome children back to school in September following several very difficult months for parents, children and schools. We would like to say a heartfelt thank you to parents/carers for the work you have done in ensuring your child/ren have received education during this period. We have heard of many cases of parents often in very  difficult circumstances who have done their very best to support their child's learning whilst schools have been closed to all but specific groups of pupils

We are sure parents are delighted that we have now reopened and children can return to their normal routines and benefit from and enjoy all that if on offer to them at school.

In March, when the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak was increasing, the government made it clear that no parent would be penalised or sanctioned for their child's non-attendance at school, as schools were then closed to all but those specific groups of pupils.

Now the circumstances have changed, and the measures taken by the government have meant that children can safely return to school. It is vital for all children to return to school to minimise as far as possible the longer-term impact of the pandemic on their education, wellbeing and wider development. We know that children have not only missed out on learning but also missed being with their friends and the wider social aspects of school.

Missing out on more time in the classroom risks pupils falling further behind. Therefore, the Department for Education have confirmed that school attendance will be compulsory again for the new academic year ahead.

This means that from 1st September 2020, the usual rules on school attendance apply, including:

  • It is a parents' duty to send their child to school regularly if they are of compulsory school age;
  • It is the schools' responsibility to record attendance and follow up absence
  • The local authority is able to resume the use of legal sanctions, including penalty notices and processes that may lead to prosecution in court for persistent absence

If you are worried about your child returning to school, please contact us on 01332 349616 and speak to member of the Team who will be able to offer reassurance about the protective measures we have in place. We are also working closely with health and other agencies who may also be able to help if needed.

In addition, this is not the time to take your child out of school for a family holiday or other term time leave. It is unlikely that any leave will be authorised by the Principal after no much enforced absence from school. The more your child is in school,  the more they will catch up.

No school or local authority wants to take legal action, and every attempt to resolve parents' concerns and improve a child's attendance will be made before any formal action is considered.

After so much disruption to your child/ren's education over recent months, the most important thing is that we all work together to get children back into school.

We also fully appreciate that some children and young people may be experiencing feelings such as anxiety, stress or low mood as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Ms Boulton is our Senior Lead for mental health and is on site to be able to support and refer to professional services where necessary.