Attendance and behaviour

Our Educational Inclusion and Partnership team can help support schools with challenging behaviour, attendance issues and those at risk of exclusion.

If a pupil is absent, all schools have a responsibility to contact the parent or carer on the first day of absence and continue to make every effort to locate the pupil (see children missing in education - below). This includes repeated telephone calls, written communications and home visits.

Behaviour and attendance support and how to notify us of attendance measures 

It is essential for pupils to attend school regularly in order to maximise the opportunities available to them. We investigate cases of irregular attendance, support schools to resolve problems and if necessary carry out legal enforcement measures.

The importance of early identification, assessment and intervention cannot be over emphasised.

What happens if we have a pupil with attendance issues?

Schools should use the form below to notify the Educational Inclusion and Partnership (EIP) team when a child has problems with their attendance. This information will be passed onto one of our inclusion officers who can support you to resolve these problems.

Contact the EIP team

Support in reducing absence and lateness

The following steps can be taken to help reduce a child's absence without resorting to legal or financial enforcement measures.

Issuing a penalty notice

Penalty notices can be issued under the following circumstances as an alternative to Magistrates' Court proceedings. However we would expect schools to follow their attendance procedures in identifying the issues and putting support in place.

Penalty notices for non-school attendance - To issue a penalty notice, there should be 5 days (10 sessions) or more unauthorised absences in a 6 week period.

Penalty notices for term time absence - To issue a penalty notice, there should be 5 days (10 sessions) or more of consecutive unauthorised absence.

Before issuing a penalty notice, please ensure you have completed the penalty notice checklist:

Other attendance support

  • Attendance and enforcement policy (Word 116KB) - This enforcement policy aims to promote good practise and the principals for good enforcement, summarising how to conduct enforcement with openness, setting standards and consistency.

  • Infection control in schools – National guidance on how long a child should be absent from school related to particular illnesses. Schools can use this to assist parents in ensuring the appropriate time off and ensuring the swiftest possible return to school.

​We aim to significantly reduce exclusions from school through earlier and more specialist assessment of students' needs and tailored packages to enable them to stay in local, mainstream provision where possible.

What do I need to do if a pupil is at risk of exclusion?
In all cases you should contact the Educational Inclusion and Partnership (EIP) team:

Report a child at risk of exclusion
You may also consider:

  • An Early Help Assessment (EHA)  - identifying the needs of a pupil and making a plan to meet those needs
  • A high needs funding application - providing a support package for pupils with special educational needs (SEN)
  • A Managed Move - Allowing children to have a trial transfer at another school (see below)
  • A Social and Emotional Mental Health (SEMH) panel - Providing early, integrated interventions to primary school children and their families (see below)
  • A pastoral support programme (PDF 630KB)
  • A parenting contract (Word 50KB) - A contract drawn up between the school, the parent(s) and the child to improve the pupil's schools attendance record and avoid legal action being taken.

Preventing exclusion - other support and resources

​This information aims to support all schools in dealing with challenging behaviour.

National guidance from Department for Education (DfE)

Local guidance

Local support for schools 

Commissioned support services for schools

The SEMH panel provide early, integrated interventions to primary school children and their families where:

  • The presenting concern is the child’s emotional, social and/or mental health needs
  • The child’s behaviour is placing their education placement at risk
  • The education setting can evidence a range of strategies have been tried, i.e. the Local Offer and the Behaviour and Inclusion Toolkit:
  • The education setting has completed an Early Help Assessment (EHA) and held at least one Team Around the Family – or there is a Child in Need or Child Protection Plan in place
  • The child does not have a statement or Education Health and Care (EHC) plan

Where a primary school child does have a statement or EHC plan in place the panel will consider a referral where emotional, social and behavioural needs form a key part of the identified needs and the placement is at risk, in order to support the SEN Review process

  • Panel will also consider requests for high needs funding where the application is in respect to social, emotional and/or mental health and allocate resource/funding appropriately

Where a school is already in receipt of high needs funding and is coming to panel for additional support the school should evidence how high needs funding is currently spent.

 Specific functions of the panel

  • To provide a multi professional forum for discussion and decision making
  • To provide a transparent, responsive referral route to targeted/specialist resources ensuring children and families access the relevant support in a timely manner
  • To work in partnership to promote inclusion and prevent exclusion     
  • To identify and deploy resources appropriately and in line with agreed priorities and timelines

Additional functions of the panel 

  • Contribute to the delivery of the Northamptonshire County Council Inclusion Strategy
  • Rigorous monitoring of the use and effectiveness of nurture and SEMH units
  • Identify and share best practice and training needs 

Cases for consideration - making a referral

Cases that meet the criteria stated above may be referred by any primary mainstream setting.

Referrals which are not for High Needs Funding need to be made on the referral form below:

or an existing up to date EHA form together with section 2 of the panel referral form.

Completed referral forms should be e-mailed to
SEMH-admin@northamptonshire.gov.uk.

How do I make a high needs funding referral?

Referrals should be made using the online form:

Make a high needs referral

What happens next?

A senior representative from the referring school will be invited to attend the panel meeting to present the case. This will not be necessary for applications for high needs funding.

The panel administrator will contact referring schools to advise of panel date and time. 

  • Each panel will meet 6 times per year (see meeting dates below)
  • Parental consent and support must be agreed for each referral to panel and the response from panel should be shared with parents
  • Each school in receipt of support via the SEMH Panel will sign a partnership contract setting out mutual expectations for each party
  • All discussion that takes place within panel meetings will remain confidential to the panel unless there are safeguarding concerns which need to be acted upon
  • Panel chair will rotate on a 12 month basis
  • Actions for each individual child will be recorded by the council panel note taker and shared with all parties within five working days.  Actions and decisions will also be uploaded to the Capita One system

When does the panel meet?

Upcoming SEMH panel dates

North (covering Corby, Kettering, East Northants and Welingborough)

South (Northampton, Daventry & South Northants)​​ ​ ​

Date ​Area ​Location
​21 March 2017​South​​Vernon Terrace Primary, Northampton
​28 March 2017​North​Tbc
​9 May 2017​South​St James CEVA Primary School, Northampton
​16 May 2017​NorthWoodnewton A-learning Community, Corby
​26 June 2017​North and South​Knuston Hall

Members of the panel

North panel​ ​
​Croyland Primary School​Key Stage 1 Nurture Unit
​Park Junior School​Key Stage 2 SEMH unit
​Woodnewton A Learning Community​Key Stage 1 Nurture Unit
​Educational Psychology Service​Consultation and Support
​Children's Social Care​Consultation and Advice
​Early Help​Consultation and Advice
​SEND Service​Consultation and Advice
​Commissioning Service​Brokerage and Aufficiency
South panel
​St James CE Primary School​Key Stage 1/2 SEMH Unit
​Vernon Terrace Primary School​Key Stage 2 SEMH and Nurture Units
​St Marys RC Primary SchoolKey Stage 1 Nurture Unit
​Educational Psychology Service​Consultation and Support
​Children's Social Care​Consultation and Advice
​​Early Help​Consultation and Advice
​SEND Service​Consultation and Advice
​​Commissioning Service​Brokerage and Sufficiency

​In very exceptional circumstances there may be a need for a temporary reduced timetable to meet a pupil’s individual needs.

The School Admissions Code (published by the DfE in December 2014) (issued under Section 84 of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998) states that a child is entitled to a full time place in the September following their 4th birthday. In very exceptional circumstances there may be a need for a temporary reduced timetable to meet a pupil’s individual needs. For example where a medical condition prevents a pupil from attending full-time education and a reduced timetable is considered as part of a re-integration package.

A reduced timetable should only be used as a short term measure. Any pastoral support programme or other agreement must have a time limit by which point the pupil is expected to attend full time or be provided with alternative provision. In agreeing to a reduced timetable a school has agreed to a pupil being absent from school for part of the week or day and therefore must record it as an authorised absence.

Safeguarding
Section 157 and 175 of the Education Act 2007 places a duty on local authorities and schools to exercise their functions with a view to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children. Schools must have regard and consideration for the safeguarding issues and the impact this might have on a child when considering a reduced timetable.

If there are safeguarding concerns, advice should be taken from the Northamptonshire MASH.

Current guidance from Ofsted states that information about children missing from education is essential and all schools should notify the local authority of any reduced education arrangements. This includes schools maintained by the local authorities, academies, free schools and independent schools.

How to report reduced timetable procedures

  • Complete the online form prior to the start of the reduced timetable.
  • Report a reduced timetable
  • If there is no confirmed end date then please add the review date.
  • Where there is no planned date identified, a review date should be set to take place within a maximum of two weeks.
  • On the day that the full-time timetable is resumed, or if another review date has been set, notify ees-admin@northamptonshire.gov.uk with the actual date of return.

​A managed move is a formal agreement between a child, their parents or carers and two schools. It allows a child to have a trial transfer to another school.

Why use a managed move?
A managed move should be considered as part of a measured response to supporting the child’s emotional, social and behavioural needs. It is likely to be a strategy considered in later stages of a pastoral support plan where there has been little or no evidence of success in the current school.

When is a managed move not used?
A managed move is not appropriate when:

  • A parent is seeking a straightforward transfer to another school
  • The child is not on a school roll
  • The child would be unable to return to the home school if the placement is unsuccessful

Managed moves process

Please refer to the full guidance below before requesting a managed move.

You can find an overview of the process below:

Before requesting a managed move

Prior to requesting a managed move, the headteacher should be satisfied all reasonable steps have been taken to resolve the pupil’s difficulties in school.

The headteacher must then consult the parents and the pupil about their views on a move to another school at a review meeting as part of the pupil's current pastoral support programme. 

If parents agree that a managed move is appropriate, and written consent is obtained, they will be asked to express a preference for an alternative school. Parents must, however, be informed that a request for a managed move may not always be accepted and also that any transport requirements are the responsibility of the home school and the parent.

When a receiving school has been identified and the parents have agreed, information will be shared with the potential receiving school. A meeting will then be arranged as soon as possible at the receiving school (good practice would be within 2 weeks) to agree whether to proceed with the managed move.

When a managed move has been agreed

Headteachers must notify us once the managed move has been agreed, to ensure that the child’s record is updated.

Notify us of a managed move

A member of the proposed school staff will normally meet the child regularly to review his progress towards the managed move targets. This gives the child the chance to identify what has gone well and how to replicate success.

During the managed move the proposed school will also provide the home school with a weekly record of the child’s attendance.

End of managed move period

At the final review meeting, a decision must be made as to whether the pupil transfers permanently to the receiving school or returns to the original school (preferably during the 6th week if successful but no later than 12 school weeks from the start date).

On the agreed date, the pupil’s name must be deleted from the admission register of the original school and added to the admission register of the receiving school.

Admissions must be notified of a successful managed move, so that pupil numbers at each of the schools in question can be updated. The Educational Inclusion and Partnership Team must also be made aware of the successful managed move so that records can be updated.

Ending a managed move early

In exceptional circumstances (usually as a result of significant behaviour problems) the receiving school may wish to end the arrangement before the managed move is completed.

If so, the receiving school’s headteacher should consult with the original headteacher before confirming this in writing to the parents, specifying the date from which the pupil must return to the original school. In this instance, please inform us of the decision and the reasons for the decision to terminate the arrangement.

ees-admin@northamptonshire.gov.uk

There are significant child protection implications when the whereabouts of a child is not known. The local authority has a duty to locate, track and monitor children missing from education and support them in returning to education.

What are a schools' responsibilities when a child is absent?

You should always assess the child’s safeguarding risk at their own address using thresholds and pathways. For example, is there a risk of forced marriage, child sexual exploitation, domestic abuse, radicalisation, honour based violence? If the judgement is the child is at risk of harm, contact the police or social care immediately.

If a pupil is absent, all schools have a responsibility to contact the parent or carer on the first day of absence and continue to make every effort to locate the pupil. When you have identified the child is not in school, please follow the procedure below.

Day 1 - Phone call
A staff member trained to do so, telephones the child’s home to seek reasons for the absence and reassurance from a parent or carer that the child is safe at home. ​
Response from parentNext step from school
​There is no answer at the home or on mobile numbers​Call back. Risk assess after 2 hours
​The parent/carer answered the call, the child is safe with them​Ask for reason for absence and record on your school's attendance management system 
​The person answering is not the parent/carer and the school is not reassured that the child is at home or safe

​The school’s designated lead for child protection should be consulted on a risk assessment and the degree of vulnerability of the child

​The parent/carer answered the call, the child is
not with them or safe and the parent is concerned

​School to advise the parent to:

  • Contact the local police station to inform them that the child is missing
  • Contact all people and places the child is known to talk to and visit to tell them that the child is missing and ask if they can help to find the child, by providing information which may shed light on the child’s whereabouts or actively searing for the child
  • Contact the family GP and Accident and Emergency Centres near where the child lives and goes to school, in case he/she has sustained an injury and been taken in for medical treatment
  • Report back to school if the child is found or remains missing
Day 2 - Follow up phone call
A subsequent telephone call must be made either from the school landline or preferably a mobile phone. ​
Day 3 – Write/email parents
Write or email to the parent in plain English, asking for contact to be made with the school immediately. Please give the parents/carers 3 working days to make contact and if you are aware that English may not be the parent’s first language, copy the letter into a language that may be more accessible. ​
​Day 5/6  - Home visit
Arrange a visit to the home address ensuring that risk assessments are in place ​

Once you have completed these checks (or within 10 days, whichever is earlier)
If the child has not been seen and the parents/carers have not made contact with either, schools must report the child as missing from education. ​

How do I report a child missing from education?

Please complete the online contact form:
Report a child missing

Note - This form is for Northamptonshire schools only. If you are from another local authority, please email us at: cmetracking@northamptonshire.gov.uk

What happens when I’ve completed a form?

We will refer the case to one of our CME Tracking Officers who will complete further investigations and feedback to schools.

Our CME Tracking Officer will let you know (usually within 10 days) if the child can be removed from your school roll.

Guidance for schools and academies on the exclusion process.

Fixed term exclusions of up to 5 days

  1. Log the exclusion in your MIS system (eg SIMS or equivalent)
  2. Log the exclusion in ONE Online

    Log the exclusion
    Capita ONE online - guidance for schools (pdf 627KB)
  3. Notify the pupil's parents
    Template letter - up to 5 days exclusion (Word 40KB)
  4. Provide and mark relevant work for the length of the pupil’s exclusion
  5. Mark the register - Code E

Fixed term exclusions of 6 to 15 days

  1. Log the exclusion in your MIS system (eg SIMS or equivalent)
  2. Log the exclusion in ONE Online:

    Log the exclusion
    Capita ONE online - guidance for schools (pdf 627KB)
  3. Notify the council using the online form
  4. Notify the council
  5. Notify the pupil's parents
    Template letter - 6-15 days exclusion (word 43KB)
  6. Provide and mark relevant work for the first 5 days of the pupil’s exclusion
    (Schools are responsible for arranging 6 day provision for fixed exclusions over 5 days)

  7. Mark the register - Code E
    If alternative provision made use Code B (Education off site) or Dual (Dual registration)

Fixed term exclusions of more than 15 days

  1. Log the exclusion in your MIS system (eg SIMS or equivalent)
  2. Log the exclusion in ONE Online:

    Log the exclusion
    Capita ONE online - guidance for schools (pdf 627KB)
  3. Notify the council using the online form
  4. Notify the council
  5. Notify the pupil's parents
    Template letter - More than 15 days exclusion (word 43KB)
  6. Provide and mark relevant work for the first 5 days of the pupil’s exclusion
    (Schools are responsible for arranging 6 day provision for fixed exclusions over 5 days)

  7. Mark the register - Code E
    If alternative provision made use Code B (Education off site) or Dual (Dual registration)

Permanent exclusions

  1. Log the exclusion in your MIS system (eg SIMS or equivalent)
  2. Log the exclusion in ONE Online:

    Log the exclusion
    Capita ONE online - guidance for schools (PDF 627KB)
  3. Notify the council using the Notification of Permanent Exclusion online form
  4. Notify the council
  5. Notify the pupil's parents:
    Template letter - permanent exclusion (Word 40KB)
  6. Provide and mark relevant work for the first 5 days of the pupil’s exclusion
    (Schools are responsible for arranging 6 day provision for fixed exclusions over 5 days, until the pupil is officially removed)
  7. Mark the register - Code E until alternative provision made, then Code B (Education off site) or Dual (Dual registration).

Pupils who are permanently excluded must not be deleted from either the admission register or the attendance register until any appeal process has been completed.

Find out more
The DFE website has further information on attendance codes and pupil registration regulations.

All schools (including independent schools) must supply the local authority with information on children who transition outside the standard transition points.

For example, if, within the school year they:

  • start at your school
  • leave your school

New starters

Please let us know as soon as possible when you have been notified by the child's parent or carer and within 5 days of registering new pupils.

Child leaving

Refer to Annex A (Regulation 8 reason for deletion) of the DfE guidance to confirm the reason for the child leaving.

How to notify us

Use the table below to check which form you need to complete.

What are you telling us about? What you need to do relevant regulation 8 reason for deletion When you need to notify us
Child has joined your school during the school termComplete the admissions register form​Not required​Within 5 days of registering new pupils (at the latest within 5 days of the deadline supplied by admissions in the admissions letter.)
Child has left your school and you know where they are going   Complete the admissions register form 

1,2,3,4,5,12,14 or 15

Please select the relevant option when prompted to on the form

No later than the time at which the pupil’s name is to be deleted from the register (for deletion the pupil must satisfy one of the criteria in the regulations)
Child has left your school and you DON'T KNOW where they are going Complete the child missing in education form 

5,6,8,12,14 or 15

Please add reason to Further information section (section 2) of form

No later than the time at which the pupil’s name is to be deleted from the register (for deletion the pupil must satisfy one of the criteria in the regulations)
Child has left your school due to another reason (for example being educated at home, at risk of exclusion)

Risk of exclusion form

Child being educated from home form

4,7, 9,10 or 15

Please add reason to Further information section (section 2) of form
No later than the time at which the pupil’s name is deleted from the register
Child has left your school due to permanent exclusion Complete the permanent exclusion form

13
This will not need adding to the form

Within 24 hours of the exclusion

Contact us

For any other advice email our Educational Inclusion and Partnership team duty officer:

eip-triage@northamptonshire.gov.uk

Schools should let us know if a parent or carer has withdrawn their child from their school to be educated at home.

You can let us know using the online form below:

Notify us of a child being home educated

Before you complete this form make sure you have a copy to attach of:

  • Parent’s letter informing you of child’s home education
  • Child’s registration certificate

If you think that there is a safeguarding risk to the child please refer to the Thresholds and Pathways procedure.

By completing this form, you are also meeting your statutory duty to supply us with information on children who leave school outside the standard transition points.

Contact the team

ees-admin@northamptonshire.gov.uk

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