30 Oct

  • By Mr L Wilson

This week’s attendance is:- 97.1% (for the academic year for students of compulsory school age the figure is 97.4%) If there is a single thing every school can do to raise standards it is to improve attendance. Most secondary schools have teams working on only this. The government spends tens of thousands of pounds on the issue. At Stockport we have identified this as a priority and are currently ahead of our ‘gold standard’ target of 97%. The national average is 95.9% If you see where we are against the top 20 performing state schools we certainly are looking every inch the world class school. However, we are not happy with this figure and wish to drive it up all the time. If you received 95% in an examination it would sound really good. However 5% absence is equal to having an additional two weeks off and statistically this means student’s drop a full GCSE grade. If we are successful at maintaining our current attendance rate until the end of the year our students will have had almost seven days more learning than the average child in the country- just by getting in as they do! Rewarding attendance The 100% attendance badge- every child starts the academic year with the badge and has to hand it in when they have a day off (staff as well!) This is a truly challenging feat. The gold standard certificate- awarded on a half termly basis for those students that have a cumulative attendance of 97% or above. Accreditation of improvement on the ‘Wall of Honour’. Each half term every student’s attendance is ‘traffic light’ shown. There is a huge incentive to improve and there is a clear understanding that we never question the validity of an absence –simply recording the statistical facts as the Department of Education demand. Attendance as a factor in the student performance tables and a factor in being selected as student of the week.