7th March 2023

Pupil attendance

Dear Parent/Carer,

As many of our systems return to normal, so have our processes regarding pupil attendance. Nationally, pupil attendance is significantly lower that pre-pandemic levels, this has a detrimental impact on pupils’ wellbeing and academic success. As a school, even though we have not quite returned to pre-pandemic levels we have high attendance levels when compared to other secondary schools both locally and nationally. I am sure you will agree that it is essential, for your child, to prioritise attending school to ensure a successful future.

Currently, a significant contributor to pupil absence is due to pupils taking holidays during term-time; we are still receiving many holiday requests. In all but the most exceptional of cases the requests will not be authorised, which is consistent with our policy that can be found here: https://pontcomp.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/Attendance-Policy-min.pdf

The school has the benefit of a shared Education Welfare Officer (EWO) who can provide intensive input to help address issues relating to attendance. Unfortunately, on very rare occasions, working alongside our EWO, we have had to issue penalty notice statements. The penalties are seen as the last resort as we would always want to remedy problems before they escalate to this level. However, it is important that this possibility is clarified; more information on penalty notices can be found here: https://www.swansea.gov.uk/article/2955/Education-Penalty-Notices-FAQs

Your continued parental support in this matter is very much appreciated.  Please contact the school if you would like any further clarification.

Yours faithfully,

Mr. Gareth Rees