Attendance requirements for the Department for Education (DfE) and Devon County Council

Update on Attendance requirements for the Department for Education (DfE) and Devon County Council

Please Act Now!

After being contacted by the Department for Education (DFE) this week we have sent an email to 40 providers that have told us on the Attendance Register that they are closed – but who have updated Pinpoint to say they are open. The DFE needs more accurate data on how your settings are being used and we are asking for all providers with early years children to act now and complete the Attendance Register .

We have identified several things that we want to share with you so that, together, we can significantly improve the data we send to the DFE – it also means that we have data locally that we can use to support you. For example, it helps us to see where attendance is low and where providers are bursting at the seams. This information is used to help us to plan and target the support that we give.

All we need to know is:

The name and date of birth of vulnerable children attending
The name and date of birth of children of critical workers and
The total number of children attending
If you are open and
If you can accommodate all requests for childcare

Once the vulnerable children and the critical workers children that you have on your own register have been added to the system it is very easy to complete and will only take a few minutes.

When we are referring to vulnerable children, we are referring to the DfE definitions of vulnerable children:

Children in Need
Children in Care
Children with a Child Protection Plan
Children with an Education, Health and Care Plan
Children with a Social Worker

Please do not include those on Early Help or locally identified as vulnerable.

Our providers fall into the following categories:

  • Those who complete and return the register every day they are open
  • Those who complete and return the register at least once a week
  • Those who completed it on occasions, but irregularly
  • Those who have completed it once or twice, but have not continued
  • Those who have never completed it.
  • Those who completed it last term and have just reopened after the summer.

If you have never completed the Attendance Register and you have children who have not yet started school in attendance, we need you to act now! There are 251 (26%) providers who have never completed a return. That is over a quarter of our providers that take early years children! This means that when reports are made, they are incomplete and inaccurate as the overall figure does not represent what is happening in Devon.

If you completed the Attendance Register at least once or on occasions, but irregularly, we have continued to tell the DFE about the level of attendance that you stated on that one return. We expect that almost all providers attendance will have increased. If this sounds like your provision, please go into the system and tell us what attendance you have now.

If you are a primary or infant school with a nursery class, a governor run preschool or a maintained nursery school you need to do:

  • the DFE Return each day
  • the Attendance Register for early years pupils each day and
  • your own MIS - and if that is not SIMS or if SIMS link is broken, you need to complete the new Attendance Collection Tool as well.

Maintained nursery classes and nursery schools log into the DFE Return using the schools Unique Reference Number (URN).

Governor run preschools only need to do the Attendance Register, however the school that shares their URN with the governor run preschool will also need to do the DFE Return.

You should find the Frequently Asked Questions helpful too.

The DFE will review the Attendance Register at the end of this month. As soon as we are told that it will continue – we will let you know.