All teachers keep a daily record of student attendance using our learner management system. SMS messages are sent daily to the provided numbers of parents whose children are absent on that day without a reason being provided. This automated process begins at 11:00 am and depending on network conditions may take some time to complete. If a student is away for more than two consecutive days without explanation from parents the class teacher will contact parents at home or work.
Parents are asked to notify known absences by telephoning on the day and writing a follow up note to explain all absences from school. Your prompt advice in this regard reduces the workload of following up absences and lessens the chance of the school and/or the class teacher contacting you unnecessarily. All students who arrive late, after 8.40am must report to Student Services to sign in. Students arriving late should have a note on the day or, at the latest, the next day explaining the reason for their lateness. Students who leave the school during the day through illness or appointments must do so via the Student Services Office. The details will be recorded and entered into the school’s attendance database.
‘Truancy’ is defined as an unexcused absence from school, and it also applies to students who are chronically late.'
Truancy is when students are absent from school without their parents’ knowledge or permission. It’s called ‘wagging’ or ‘skipping’ school.
Students who truant tend to hide this from their parents or do it against their wishes. Unfortunately a small number of Hallett Cove School students begin truanting in Middle School and continue the practice into Senior School, unaware or dismissive of the long reaching implications of such behaviour and habits.
If your child is truanting, it might look like he/she is going to school. He/she leave and come home at the usual time- they may even go to school some of the time- but miss particular classes or even whole days at school.
Research in Australia and the USA reveal the following possible consequences for truancy:
Decline in Academic Performance
Being absent from class decreases a student’s ability to learn. It is difficult to succeed if a student misses too much work, because it is hard to catch up. In addition, absent students lose interest in school, which results in low academic performance. Although truancy has known effects on individual, truancy has negative on the overall learning environment.
Without proper supervision during the day, truant teens are more likely to get involved in criminal activities, such as vandalism or shoplifting. Truancy can also lead to delinquency if students begin associating with gangs. Being chronically absent from school causes children to engage in substance abuse. In fact, truancy is a risk factor for marijuana use.
Truancy creates problems beyond high school. For example, since truant students are more likely to quit school, they have decreased opportunities for career advancement. The lack of opportunity to go to University or TAFE due to poor grades limits employment options and increases the likelihood of lower salaries and unemployment. http://classroom.synonym.com/causes-effects-truancy-8591978.html
Evidence received by the Australian Government Law Reform Commission from young people during focus groups suggests some students are absent from school more often than they attend. Reasons for truancy include boredom at school, embarrassment and frustration at poor performance, fear of bullying and harassment, drug dependency, family stress or conflict, homelessness and defiance of authority.
Under the School Education Act 1999 parents have primary responsibility for ensuring their child goes to school. Regular attendance is essential for children to gain maximum benefit from their schooling. School attendance is compulsory in South Australia until 17 years of age.
Managing Truanting Behaviour at HCS
As a school we use a range of consequences and supportive management of students who truant, including:
- SMS when not in HG
- Parent contact when missing from unexplained lesson
- Making up time after school
- Alternative programs to encourage attendance
- Referral to Attendance Officer
If you know your child is missing school, talking to them is an important first step. Contact the school and talk to one of the people listed below and find out what assistance we can provide. It’s vital that problems are identified early on, before they become chronic. Please contact:
- Bronwyn Phillips (Year 9 and Head of Middle School),
- Liz vandenBrink (Head of Junior School),
- Kersten Stengel (Head of Senior School )or
- Gill Panton ( Student Counsellor) with any concerns
Information for this article has been sourced from the websites listed. For further information you may wish to access those websites.