Reader Interactions


  1. Kim Carberry

    Yes to all of this!!!
    It is so unfair that children are punished for being ill or having medical conditions. My girls have never had a full year at school becuase they needed checks on their hearts, a condition they were born with. They missed out on so much at primary school and knew it wasn’t fair.
    My youngest girls school doesn’t reward attendance which I am so pleased about they prefer to reward kids who work hard and put the effort in. x

  2. Lisa | Handmade in Israel

    Absolutely appalling! I have never come across attendance awards but they are a terrible idea! There are so many valid reasons that a child has to occasionally miss school.
    The awards in my boys’ school were always awarded the same circle of kids anyway :/

  3. Louise (Little Hearts, Big Love)

    I completely agree with you Anne. Attendance awards are a terrible idea, and especially so during a pandemic. It is completely wrong for a child to end up missing out on a big treat due to being ill – something that is completely beyond their control. I know the pressure on attendance comes from higher up and that good attendance is important, but there must be better ways to encourage it and some allowance for sick-days. The girls’ infant school seemed to have a good approach – I never felt any pressure over Jessica’s attendance and I never even knew that attendance certificates were awarded until Sophie came home one day with one in her bag. They obviously never made a big deal of it which I was thankful for. I’m so sorry that Little Man missed out on a big treat and was upset by it and I hope that school will take some of your thoughts on board.


    That is really shocking to hear. I know schools want to push attendance but it’s unfair that those that are ill are penalised.

  5. Kara Guppy

    Our school has scrapped it since COVID but before the primary school kids were treated to a pizza hut meal, although my secondary child just got a badge. I know attendance is bad in some and it is a way of encouraging them to come into school, but I do agree with you. The other thing that annoys me is the school treating the “naughty” kids, leaving the ones who follow the rules with nothing

  6. Joanne

    I remember thinking many of these same things when I was in school myself. I had one girl I graduated high school with and she bragged that she and her sisters had perfect attendance all 12 years… many of those days they came in sick, stayed in home room until attendance was taken and then went to the nurse and went home. Thanks for exposing all the rest of us to germs! Luckily the only thing the perfect attendance kids got was an award and my mom was more apt to “reward” us with a skip day from school at the end of the year where we went to the beach or the zoo or some other fun activity if we had only missed a few days for illness. We had great grades so why not?! It’s a philosophy we’ve continued with our own (when they’re in school– mostly I have homeschooled them so we can school whenever we want). As far as I know all our schools dropped perfect attendance with covid in an effort to encourage all kids to stay home. In the US the kids must stay home even if someone else in their house is sick for a good 10-14 days regardless of their own testing results. I’m hopeful that schools will not bother instituting it again and instead continue to focus on encouraging those who are sick (with flu, with stomach bugs, etc) to stay home and keep their germs away.

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