Student Absence Procedure

Attendance Thresholds

Students should aim to attend all of their scheduled classes/activities. Both authorised and unauthorised absences will affect a student’s attendance percentage.

The reporting period is the period over which attendance is calculated. This is a two weekly period.

If students are absent, informal meetings may be arranged so that any issues can be identified.

 

Stage 1

If attendance falls below 85% for the reporting period formal meetings will commence with lecturer or student support.  Students will be able to disclose any barriers to attendance or engagement that they may be experiencing.  Plans will be put in place with a view to improving attendance levels.

Students will be informed that failure to follow these plans will result in their funds being reduced or withdrawn.

Students who do not participate in Stage 1 will have their funding withdrawn and any overpayments reclaimed if they are not achieving appropriate engagement. They will be required to arrange a meeting with their PAT and student support in order to discuss having their funding reinstated.

 

Stage 2

If attendance does not improve, or improves and then declines within the same academic year, the student will be required to attend a formal meeting and agree an Attendance and

Engagement Support Plan with their PAT.  Students who do not participate in the Stage 2 process will have their funding withdrawn and any overpayments reclaimed where they are not achieving appropriate engagement and will be required to arrange a meeting with their PAT and Student Support in order to discuss having their funding reinstated.

 

Stage 3

 Students who have been through Stages 1 and 2 will not be invited to attend another

meeting within the same academic year if issues continue or reoccur. Instead, withdrawal or reduction of student support funds may be initiated immediately if they are not achieving appropriate engagement. The onus will then be on the student to engage with staff in order to agree a plan for improving attendance and engagement.

 

The Student Support Team may consider the following types of absence as acceptable:

Absence

Notification

Supporting Documentation

Funeral of close relative or friend

In advance.  To PAT or Student Support

Notification of funeral

Court Appearance

In advance.  To PAT or Student Support

Court citation, letter from solicitor/lawyer or court official

Jury Duty Initial Day

Subsequent Days

In advance.  To PAT or Student Support

During your absence to PAT

Court Citation.

Court documentation confirming the dates

 

 

Hospital Appointments/Clinics (including anti-natal appointments)

In advance to PAT or Student Support

Hospital letter or appointment card.

Emergency Dental or Doctor appointments

PAT or Student Support

Confirmation that this was an emergency – Dr/Dental letter/card

Illness of Children

PAT or Student Support

This is only if there is no one else available to look after them.  You must provide confirmation from school/childcare that they did not attend.

University or College interview

In advance

Interview letter or email confirmation

Ongoing medical condition

You must notify Student Support of your medical condition ASAP in order that they can put appropriate support measures in place if required.

Medical letter from your Doctor or Hospital outlining condition and stating that it may lead to periods of absence.

Must be supported by a Personal Learning Support Plan through College

 

Job Interview

In advance to PAT or Student Support

Interview letter or email

Maternity/Paternity/Adoption Leave

Must notify PAT or Student Support ASAP then make an appointment with Student Funding to discuss financial implications

Ante Natal appointment cards

A maximum of 4 weeks will be paid for maternity and adoption leave.  Parental leave will be a maximum of 2 weeks.

In order for any of these absences to be considered, supporting documentation MUST be submitted.  ALL documentation should be submitted to their PAT or the Student Support Team

If you have booked a holiday prior to applying for a course and can provide confirmation this may be considered as authorised absence.  However, holidays booked and taken during course time will be treated as unauthorised.  Students must notify their PAT or the Student Support Team prior to going on holiday.

 

 

Absence is greater than seven calendar days

If your absence is due to ill health, you are required to comply with the following regulations, to receive a payment.

  • If you are absent for more than seven consecutive calendar days you must get a medical certificate from your doctor if you consulted him/her during your absence. You must meet any costs associated with getting a private medical certificate and this can only be given at your doctor’s discretion. A maximum of four weeks medical leave will qualify for continued Student Support Fund payments
  • A Doctor’s medical certificate must be submitted to Student Support  as soon as the doctor has issued this to you.  College is open during holiday periods (except Christmas and New Year).

Additional Information

Maternity, Paternity and Adoption Leave

Maternity leave - You must inform your PAT or the Student Support Team of your pregnancy as soon as you can. Student Support will request a risk assessment to be done by the lecturer to ensure you are completely safe in the surroundings you are timetabled to be in.  You should also make an appointment with the Student Support Team to discuss the financial implications when you take your Maternity Leave.

If this falls within the academic year you will be eligible to receive four weeks Student Support Funding while on Maternity Leave, thereafter you should claim Maternity Benefit.

Paternity Leave - You must inform your PAT or Student Support Team of your requirements as soon as you can. You should also make an appointment with the Student Funding Team to discuss the financial implications when you take your Paternity Leave if this falls within the academic year.  You will be eligible to receive four weeks Student Support Funding while on Paternity Leave.

Adoption Leave - You must inform your PAT or Student Support Team of your requirements as soon as you can. You should also make an appointment with the Student Support Team to discuss the financial implications when you take your Adoption Leave if this falls within the academic year.  You will be allowed time to attend appointments in relation to the adoption process, you are required to provide supporting evidence of appointments.  You will be eligible to receive four weeks Student Support Funding while on Adoption Leave.

 

Student Responsibilities

You are responsible for:

  • reporting all absences in line with the absence reporting procedure, this includes providing supporting documentation
  • contacting any lecturer who has marked you absent in error
  • arranging appointments around your course timetable
  • managing your attendance, attainment, progression and engagement in your course in line with College requirements
  • participating in the management of attendance, attainment, progression and engagement
  • notifying your PAT/Student Support Team of your intention to withdraw from your course and make an appointment with the Student Support Team in order that they can discuss the financial implications for you.

Where you are not happy that your Student Support Fund payments have been withdrawn you can appeal this decision.  Appeals should be in writing, giving a full explanation of the grounds for your appeal. Appeals should be addressed to Ms Anne Bremner, Director of Learning and Teaching, North Highland College, Ormlie Road, Thurso KW14 7EE or e-mail anne.bremner@uhi.ac.uk