An annexe of Figtree High School
ATTENDANCE POLICY & PROCEDURES
Flametree is an annexe of Figtree High School located on a separate site at North Wollongong. Flametree services high schools throughout the Illawarra. The setting offers a total of 28 student places. Students are placed at Flametree as part of a DEC Student Services placement process. All students retain an enrolment at their local school.
The Principal at Figtree High School is responsible for ensuring that student places are managed efficiently and equitably and to ensure that students who have a placement use the service that has been allocated. This ensures equity of access to the student places and the services at Flametree.
Once students are placed, Flametree will work to ensure that acceptable student attendance is established and maintained. The school will work intensively with the DEC Learning and Engagement Team, parents and carers and other relevant agencies to ensure that all available resources are used to engage and support Flametree students to attend regularly and achieve important academic goals.
COMMENCEMENT OF STUDENT PLACEMENT
- Students who are given a place at Flametree are required to establish and maintain acceptable school attendance.
- Unless there are exceptional circumstances, parents/carers must arrange to attend a placement meeting within 10 school days of first contact from the Flametree staff. If a meeting cannot be arranged within a reasonable time frame, the student's case will be referred to the DEC Learning and Engagement Team who may a reconsider the placement offer and make a placement offer to the next eligible student.
- During student orientation, students and carers will be informed of the Flametree attendance policy and issued with a school information booklet outlining attendance requirements.
- To secure the placement offer, students must begin regular attendance within a reasonable time frame after the placement interview. The Formal Advice of Student Placement (Form D) which confirms a student's enrolment will not be submitted until the student has established attendance. If the student does not begin attendance within a reasonable time frame, a letter will be issued informing the parent/carer that the placement will be reviewed by the school and that the offer of placement may be potentially withdrawn.
- Students are expected to attend all school days unless there is an acceptable reason for not doing so. If, over a 10 week period, daily attendance (including part days, TAFE days and work placement) falls below an acceptable level, an attendance warning letter will be issued. The letter will re-state the attendance requirements and alerting the parent/carer to the legal and educational consequences of poor attendance. That is: breaching the NSW Education Reform Act (1990), possible termination of Sydney Distance Education High School enrolment and failing to meet course requirements for the relevant stage. The student and their carer will be asked to ensure that attendance requirements are met in the future.
- If satisfactory attendance is not re-established a subsequent letter will be issued, requesting a meeting with the parent/carer and the student to resolve any barriers to the student's attendance and to establish a realistic attendance plan. The parent/carer will be informed of the need for the student to use their student place regularly or risk referral back to the Learning and Engagement team and their home school with possible loss of placement at Flametree.
- If the student does not respond positively to the agreed plan and the student's attendance continues to be unacceptable, a further warning letter and attendance meeting will be arranged. At the meeting, the possible legal measures will be reviewed including a Flametree referral to the relevant Learning and Engagement Officer and consideration for the Home School Liaison Program. The possibility of DEC legal action for non-attendance will be reviewed with the student and parent.
- If there is no significant improvement in attendance over the next 20 school days, a Home School Liaison Referral will be made via the DEC Learning and Engagement team. The parent/carer and census school principal home school principal will be informed in writing of the HSLO referral. A Child Well-Being referral will also be made for Habitual Absence.
- Where HSLO intervention is implemented, Flametree will work cooperatively with the relevant officer to support the student's return to school. If this intervention is not successful within a reasonable time frame, the Principal and/or Head Teacher Flametree will liaise with the DEC Learning and Engagement Team and home school principal to review the efficacy of the student's placement. The Principal may recommend the termination of the placement and referral back to the DEC placement panel or census school for other action and intervention. The Principal Figtree High School may recommend that student be placed on the ED eligibility list and that the placement is offered to the next eligible student.
STUDENT AWARDS FOR ATTENDANCE
- Students achieving 90% attendance or better (including part days, TAFE days and work placement) will receive a Flametree Achievement Award at the school's annual Presentation Day and will also be awarded 100 school bonus points as part of the reward system.
ATTENDANCE & STUDENT BEHAVIOUR
- Students leaving school without permission during the school day will receive appropriate consequences as part of the school's discipline and welfare system. Parents/carers will be contacted to alert them to this breach of discipline on each occasion.
- Students making this decision three times within 10 school days will be suspended for Continued Misbehaviour unless an alternative individual attendance plan is in place. Should the behaviour persist, the student will incur the normal consequences under the DEC Guidelines for Suspension and Expulsion in NSW.
VARIATIONS TO THE POLICY
- Students receiving NSW Department of Juvenile Justice control orders will maintain their placement for the remainder of the current school term. If the young person has not been released from custody at the beginning of the new term or school year, their placement will reviewed by the Principal after consultation with the NSW Department of Juvenile Justice.
The Principal may decide to retain or terminate the placement based on this advice.
If a decision is taken to terminate the placement, the DEC Learning and Engagement team, Juvenile Justice case worker, home school principal and parents or carers will be notified of the decision in writing. The student may be referred back to the Learning and Engagement team to consider their eligibility for subsequent ED/BD placement on their release.
- The management of this Attendance Policy will be at the discretion of the Principal after considering the individual circumstances of the student concerned. The Principal reserves the right to vary this policy to cater for individual student's needs and circumstances.