Issue - items at meetings - Annual Report on School Attendance, Access and Exclusions
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Annual Report on School Attendance, Access and Exclusions
Report of the Strategic Director, People (copy attached)
To note the information contained in the Annual Report on School Attendance, Access and Exclusions.
19.1 The Committee considered a report of the Strategic Director, People which provided information including data on school attendance, access to education and exclusions for all children and young people in Brighton and Hove
19.2 A presentation was given focusing on positive elements and on areas which required further work. All schools now had responsibility for recording, monitoring and addressing nonattendance. Secondary schools including the two academies had employ their own staff who worked directly with pupils, parents, carers and other agencies to support young people to support young people to attend school regularly. The local authority had provided these staff with appropriate training and resources to undertake this work and would continue to provide advice and guidance on al matters relating to school attendance. Primary schools were also working with the local authority to put in place appropriate strategies to continue to build on the good attendance levels in the city’s primary schools.
19.3 Councillor Lepper noted the figures for exclusions querying whether unofficial exclusions were illegal. It was confirmed that they were and that if the LEA became aware of instances of this schools were challenged. Officers tried to drill down into the figures to see whether patterns were emerging. Exclusion should not be used as a response to persistent low level disruption or where pupils were struggling in main stream education.
19.4 Rachel Travers Amaze/VSO referred to the work carried out by CYPOSC and was pleased to note the work that was being carried forward to seek to avoid permanent exclusions. It would be helpful to receive a more detailed break down of these figures if available. There was a need to be more creative in this respect and to link with the stronger families/ stronger communities work being carried out.
19.5 Councillor Wealles referred to the number of persistent absences (20%), that this figure appeared to be high and he enquired regarding measures taken to reduce this figure. It was explained that this figure related to all absences, including sickness, and authorised absences. However schools were encouraged to use a robust approach and to appoint a member of their governing board to take responsibility for leading on this issue.
19.6 Councillor Gilbey referred to the work being undertaken in relation to referrals for children missing education. It was clarified that this related to children and families who did not willingly engage with the education system, these were not children who were without a school place. Eleanor Davies, Parent Forum referred to the work which she was aware was being undertaken to address disengagement and truancy in Year 11 pupils.
19.7 RESOLVED – That the Committee note the information contained in the Annual Report on School Attendance, Access and Exclusions.