The Education Act 1989 (the Act)
The Act sets out requirements for students, parents, boards and principals.
Students 6–16 years old must be enrolled in and attend school:
Every person who is not a foreign student is required to be enrolled at a registered school at all times during the period beginning on the person’s sixth birthday and ending on the person’s 16th birthday(Section 20).
Students required to enrol must attend school:
Every student of a registered school (other than a correspondence school) who is required by section 20 of this Act to be enrolled at a registered school shall attend the school whenever it is open (Section 25).
Parents are responsible for their child’s regular attendance at school:
Every parent of a person who while enrolled at a registered school, does not attend…commits an offence. Cases of severe truancy are referred to the local truancy officer.
Regular Attendance Assists Learning
Student attendance, along with effective teaching, has the greatest influence on student engagement and achievement. All students must be present at school so they can participate and engage in their learning. Parents and boards of trustees are legally responsible to ensure students’ regular attendance at school.
Irregular attendance may be an early indicator of problems with student motivation or teaching effectiveness. Students with high absenteeism are less likely to succeed in their learning. If a student misses five school days each term, or one day a fortnight, they will miss the equivalent of one year of school over 10 years. As the level of absenteeism grows, the difficulty of re-engaging in learning can grow exponentially.
Ways to report your child’s absence with the child’s name, room and reason for absence:
Online: Via an online form on our our website. This method includes an email being sent to the office, your child’s teacher and yourself as a record. The online form can be found on the home page of our website or on the drop down menu of our Parent Information tab. You can also CLICK HERE to go directly to that form.
Phone: 534 9765 leave a message on extension 1
Skoolbag: On Absentee Form
We do not advise you to tell the teacher or send them a direct email in case they are away that day and there is a reliever in the room
Types of Absence
- Student is at home, with an illness or medical reason. Medical certificate may be requested for prolonged illness.
- Unplanned absences such as accident, road closure, extreme weather conditions etc.
- Planned non-attendance such as national/local representation in a sporting or cultural event in New Zealand or overseas.
- Approved absence (including overseas) can also include bereavement, visiting an ill relative, exceptional family circumstances.
- The explanation for the absence is accepted by the school as the reason for the absence, but the reason does not fit within the Ministry policy as a justifiable reason to take the student off school
- Parents may consider the absence was justified and may have provided a written explanation). Eg “Molly had to stay home to look after her younger brother” or “We went for a two-week family holiday in the South Island.” This includes overseas absence not approved by the principal.
- A parent’s note does not provide justification.