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High absence rates for last day of term

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By Fiona Reid
Front
High absence rates for last day of term

JUST a third of secondary school pupils attended class on Monday, which was the last day of term.

We asked Dumfries and Galloway Council for the attendance figures for the region following an outcry from families over the decision to end the school year on a Monday.

And the data shows that only 33 per cent of the region’s secondary students turned up on that day.

Attendance was far higher at primary level, with 70 per cent of younger children still going to school.

Explaining the controversial decision to break up on a Monday, a council spokesperson said: “The school holiday and session dates are agreed by the Local Negotiating Committee for Teachers (LNCT) and are ratified by education and learning committee.

The sessions are required to adhere to 195 days in each academic year. This year required them to have a day in July which was a Monday due to this requirement.”

And they also set out the principals for deciding school holidays, which are: equal length terms; a two-week break in October; the first two weeks in April as Easter break; aim to finish at end June; to prevent fragmented holidays for pupils by building inset days against bank holidays; and retain full weeks for teaching and, where not possible, prevent repetition of the same day of the week off, as this impacts unequally on timetabled activity and part-time staff.

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