Transport & Attendance
Dear Parents and Carers
I hope this finds you well in what are still strange times.
Whilst this has been a far more normal year at the academy there were still some issues that were left over from Covid and lockdown. One of the major issues this academic year has been with transport. We have seen issues in some authorities with a lack of drivers and this has meant that some students have missed a considerable amount of schooling. This was something beyond anyone’s control. There were, however, some issues that we all want to ensure are not repeated.
Kent Local Authority requires that all families reapply for transport each year. Applications are now open and it is important that families apply to ensure there is no break in service. You can apply through the following link:
Medway local Authority requires some families to reapply and they have been identified and contacted already. Apply for special educational needs (SEN) travel assistance (medway.gov.uk)
If you feel that you need support in making the application then please contact the academy and a member of the Parent & Carer Partnership Team will be in touch to help out.
This year we have had an increasing number of parents and carers collecting their children early from school. The academy day finishes at 3:15 with students on buses by 3:20. In exceptional circumstances, obviously the academy will support a student being picked up early but in some cases this has become the norm. If your circumstances are that you cannot collect at 3:15 then I urge you to consider applying for transport. The South East Attendance Advisory Service (SEAAS) have been looking into students that are missing a portion of their schooling due to early collection. A student that misses 15 minutes a day, misses just under one and a half lessons a week. This is 48 lessons a year which is two lessons short of a fortnight of schooling missed. In addition to this our second registration is at the end of the day and so technically these absences should be recorded as unauthorised.
The academy is having to explain this situation and is under pressure to reduce and eliminate this practice.
I very much appreciate your understanding and support in these matters.