The following procedures should be understood in light of the College Attendance Policy.
As part of our Duty of Care responsibilities these procedures are designed to help us ensure that we know the whereabouts of all students at all times. These procedures rely on teachers and administrative staff providing and checking the most up to date information available.
Maintenance of Accurate Attendance Records
The College uses SEQTA Teach to record student absences. The College must account for every absence of every student and record the reason in SEQTA Teach. Teachers input absentees from their roll group on SEQTA Teach during Form between 8:50am and 9:00am.
Primary Teachers will complete an AM/PM attendance check daily. Secondary Teachers will complete a Module attendance check throughout each day.
Classes (eg: tutorials, sports training, choir, Study Cafe) occurring before and after school should be entered into SEQTA Teach and parents will be contacted if a student is expected to, but does not attend the class. Generally this will be done by Student Services. If the office is closed the supervising teacher should inform the Parent.
Primary specialist teachers (eg Art, Music, Indonesian) will liaise with the Classroom Teacher to ensure that those students present in their class are consistent with the Roll Group Attendance Report.
Peripatetic teachers should report any unexpected absences to Student Services at the beginning of the lesson.
Information about students involved in Excursions or other Educational activities outside of the classroom (eg Incursions, special programmes) should be provided by the supervising teacher 5 school days prior to the event. Supervising teachers are responsible to report any absences in SEQTA Teach.
College Procedures for Following up Absences
Each morning Student Services will take written notification, messages from voicemail and process all incoming calls explaining absences. At approximately 9:30am once all absentee notifications and reasons for absences have been processed, Student Services will contact parents of students with unexplained absences via SMS where applicable or via phone when necessary. Messages will be left on answering machines/messagebank where there is no answer asking parents to return our call. Student Services will make contact with parents to resolve all unexplained absences. Where this does not happen they will report this to the Head of School.
Students Missing From Class
During the course of the day, if students’ names are not recorded as being absent and the student is not present in any module (or class) the supervising teacher must contact Student Services immediately to advise of the student’s absence. Student Services will communicate this to either the Head of School or the Deputy Principal.
A search for the student will then commence. In conjunction with the search an announcement will be made over the College PA requiring the student to report to Parent Services.
If the student is not located the student’s Parent/Guardian will be contacted and the search will continue both on and off campus until the student’s whereabouts is determined.
Once the student has been located any necessary pastoral care and/or disciplinary action will be taken.
The College will maintain contact with the Parent/Guardian throughout this process.
College Procedures for Following up Lateness
Students Arriving Late To College
The College day starts at 8:40am with students expected to arrive at the Form/Roll Class by 8:45am.
Parents/Guardians of Primary Students who arrive after 8:50am should report to Student Services with their child(ren) to register their arrival. Students arriving prior to 8:50am should report to their Roll Group classroom.
Secondary Students who arrive at the College after 9:00am are required to report directly to Student Services to register their arrival. Written notification from the Parent/Guardian must be provided explaining the lateness. The Student will be issued with a Late Slip that is to be handed to the teacher upon arrival at their first class.
Students arriving prior to 9:00 am should report to their Form Class. Students that are late to Form will be issued with a Personal Management Infringement.
Students arriving late to school with no written notification from their Parent/Guardian will be issued a Demerit which may be removed if written notification is presented by the next school day.
Persistently late students will be referred to the Head of School.
Examples of acceptable reasons for lateness are:
- Accident on the way to College
- Transport breakdown on the way to College.
- Transperth or College bus arrives late
- Other unavoidable and sufficient reasons
Examples of unacceptable reasons for lateness are:
- Sleeping in
- Just late (no reason given)
- Appointments which could have been made out of school hours (including driving lesson/test)
- Other avoidable and insufficient reasons
NOTE: Lateness on compassionate grounds, e.g. family trauma, will be followed up by the Pastoral Care Team to support the student.
Responsibilities of the Parent/Guardian
It is the Parent/Guardian’s responsibility to ensure that their children are enrolled in and attend school every day, unless there are acceptable reasons for absence.
Parents/Guardians are asked to notify the College of any absence before 8.30am on the day of the absence.
Parents/Guardians of students who are absent from school must provide notification (by letter, diary note, sms or by phone) explaining the reason for the absence. A Certificate of illness may be required.
Acceptable reasons for absence:
- 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
Short-term absences – 1 or 2 days
Parents/Guardians are asked to provide notification in writing, detailing the reason for absence, on the day of return to College.
Long-term absences – 3 or more days
Parents/Guardians are asked to contact the College before the absence, if possible, or on the third day, at the latest, to explain the absence. In addition, written notification, stating the reason for the absence needs to be provided on the day of return to College. If the reason is sickness, Parents/Guardians are expected to provide a Doctor’s Certificate (for 3 days or more).
Very long-term absences
Parents/Guardians are asked to discuss with the Head of School/Principal the implications of long-term absences from the College, before firm plans are made. When students are unavoidably absent for a long period of time, where possible the College will provide details of work for students to go on with, if requested to do so.
Please note that neither the College nor Parents/Guardians have the authority to vary the attendance requirements as detailed in the Education Act 1999.
Reporting and Disclosure of Attendance Data to Relevant Authorities
The College Registrar will provide attendance data to relevant authorities as required by those authorities. This includes but may not be limited to:
- all necessary data for any audit required of the College
- disclosure of attendance data about any individual student as required by legislation
Managing Alternative Attendance Arrangements
If alternative attendance arrangements are deemed necessary for medical, educational or other necessary reasons the College will develop a plan which is to be stored on SEQTA Teach and a copy provided to the Parent/Guardian.
The panel developing the plan should include the Head of School, the Principal (or Deputy), the Pastoral Care Team, the Parent/Guardian and when necessary the Learning Support Coordinator.
The plan is to be reviewed regularly.
Addressing Student Absence with Parents
Examples of unacceptable reasons for absence are:
- Shopping expeditions with or without caregiver
- 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 and tests)
- Excessive time for appointments which are avoidable
Unexplained absences will be reported to the Head of School.
Monitoring Attendance Issues (including persistent lateness)
Concerns about prolonged or unexplained absence (or lateness) should also be communicated (either by email or at Staff Meetings) by Student Services and classroom teachers to the Deputy Principal and the relevant Heads of School. The Heads of School are responsible to communicate these concerns to parents and where necessitated by legislation to inform relevant authorities.
College Procedures for Following Up Unacceptable Student Absences
- Where an absence is proposed, or has occurred, and the reason is unacceptable, the Head of School will speak to the parent/guardian about the absence. The Head of School will seek to obtain an assurance from the parent/guardian that such unacceptable absences will not continue. When deemed necessary a plan will be established to help support the assurance given by the parent/guardian.
- If absences are deemed excessive or continue on a regular basis, after the College has
discussed the matter and obtained assurances from the parent/guardian, the College will
notify the local District Education Office Retention and Attendance Officer. The College will inform the Parent/Guardian in writing of this notification.
- In the case of an unexplained absence of more than ten days (cumulative) the Parent/Guardian will be notified in writing, by the College, indicating an intention to suspend or terminate enrolment.
- If there is no improvement in attendance the College may suspend or terminate the student’s Enrolment.
‘Removing’ students from attendance records
The Principal has authority to remove a student’s name from the College’s attendance records when there are reasonable grounds to believe that the student is a) enrolled in another school; b) enrolled in homeschooling; c) no longer resident in the State; or d) has been granted an exemption under Section 11. When a student leaves a school, no transfer note is received and their whereabouts are unknown, the student is considered to be ‘missing’. (See Section 21 of the School Education Act 1999).
Under the Student Tracking System (STS), a cross-sectoral initiative involving both government and nongovernment schools, ‘missing’ students must be reported to the Student Tracking Coordinator in the Department of Education (DoE) where a school has been unsuccessful in locating the student within 20 days of the start the their absence, and their parent/s cannot be contacted. The STS Officer may authorise the removal of the student’s name from the College’s attendance records, and recording on the enrolment register of enrolment ceasing.
Developing Plans for Students with Persistent Absence
Where students are persistently absent or late to College the Head of School and the Pastoral Care Team may deem it helpful to develop a plan to address the issue. The Parent/Guardian and the student will be involved in this process. This plan will be made available on SEQTA Teach and a copy provided to the Parent/Guardian. The plan should be reviewed regularly until it is either deemed no longer necessary or further action is taken.
Retaining All Relevant Documentation
The College will retain all relevant attendance documentation as required by legislation using the SEQTA Teach database. The College will retain these records for seven years from the day on which the student’s enrolment ceases.