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Frequently asked questions

In addition to our regular newsletters, we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions and our answers that we hope you find useful, whether your son or daughter is currently at Upwell Academy, or you are considering us for your child’s education.

If you have a question that isn’t listed here, please contact us, and we will respond to you as soon as possible. Alternatively, please call our reception, where a member of staff will be delighted to answer any questions you may have.

Please select a question from the list below to reveal the answer:

My son or daughter is unwell and will not be attending today. How do I report this to the academy?

It is important that we are notified of the reasons for any pupil being absent. Parents/carers are expected to telephone the academy by 9.15am at the beginning of any day of absence. Unless the academy receives a telephone call the absence will be recorded as unauthorised and will show up in the academy’s truancy figures.

Extended absences can mean that pupils miss important elements of their studies. When this happens we request parents come into the academy to see the class teacher and collect material to be completed at home.

Our expectation is that pupil attendance will be 95% and above.

My son or daughter is going to be late. How do I report this to the academy?

If your child is going to be late arriving at school please phone us to let us know. Where a child arrives late they must be brought to the main academy reception so that we can register that they have arrived. We expect all pupils to be on time, but children who arrive after 9.15am (when registers close) are recorded as late, which is an unauthorised absence.

What happens if my son or daughter has a dentist/doctor appointment during the day?

We ask parents, were possible, to arrange routine appointments outside of school time so that children do not miss valuable time in class. However, we understand there are occasions where appointments have to take place during the school day.

If your child has to go out of school at any time during the school day for an appointment please let us know. When collecting your child during the day for an appointment please come to the main reception and we will collect them from the class for you.

What is the procedure for asking the academy to grant my son or daughter exceptional leave of absence?

As you may be aware, new Government guidelines have made it clear that head teachers may not grant leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Exceptional circumstance may be:

  • Families of armed forces personnel returning from a tour of duty
  • Police or other service personnel whose leave has been cancelled during academy holidays, such as occurred during the London Olympic Games
  • A family funeral

Please be aware that these guidelines are set by the Government, not schools and if you decide to take your child out of the academy during term time unauthorised, you may receive a penalty notice.

If you wish your child to be considered for a leave of absence, then please call into the academy office for a form. Our expectation is that pupil attendance will be 95% and above.

What time does the academy open and close, and how is the school day structured?

Children should arrive after 8.50am and not later than 8.55am. At 8.50am children will be allowed to enter the academy and proceed to their classrooms, where learning activities are provided. The academy day is as follows:

  • Session 1 9am – 10.30am
  • Break 10.30am – 10.45am
  • Session 2 10.45am – 12.00pm
  • Lunch 12pm – 1pm
  • Session 3 1pm – 3.15pm

Infants have a short break during session 3.

How much homework should my child be doing?

Home learning provides a valuable link between the academy and home, allowing parents and teachers to share in pupil’s studies and progress. Parental involvement is an essential ingredient to pupil success. Every pupil has a homework diary and half-termly booklets which clearly details the tasks to be carried out. Tasks will primarily focus on reading and sharing books as well as activities of a ‘further practice’ nature i.e. spellings to learn, mathematics work to practise, reading etc. These tasks are intended to take no longer than 15 minutes each day for the youngest pupils and a maximum of 30 minutes each day for the oldest pupils.

Pupils transferring to high school need to be familiar with homework routines and developed independent working habits. Home Learning is set on an individual basis and is left to the class teacher’s discretion. If you wish to know more about how you can help your child at home please make contact with the class teacher who will be pleased to see you.

How do I know if my son or daughter is making enough progress?

Each term, you will be provided with an end of term report (year 1 upwards) which will include your child’s attendance level and their assessment levels. We have parents’ evenings during the school year where you can book to see your child’s class teacher and talk about their progress and how they are getting on at school. We have an open door policy and are happy for parents to come in and talk to class teachers at the beginning of the day or to make an appointment for a longer discussion. The children themselves will know what level they are working at, what are their targets and what they need to do to achieve them.

In the reception class, assessment is on a number of different areas of progress and a record is kept for each child to which parents are actively encouraged to contribute.

We hold cafes in reading, maths, and science in each class where parents are encouraged to come in to work for an hour with their children. This can help parents to know what their children are currently learning and so that they can support them at home.

Where do I drop my child off if I am driving them to the academy?

Unfortunately, there is no parking available for parents directly outside the academy and we ask parents to park nearby and walk to the school gate to drop off or collect their children.

My child will need 'school meals' at the academy - how does this work?

Healthy hot lunches are cooked on the premises and menus are sent out weekly to all pupils; for more information, please click here.

My son or daughter needs to take medication - how is this managed at the academy?

Please let us know about any medical conditions your child may have and remember to inform us of any changes.

We are able to administer prescribed medicines at the academy, providing that the child concerned is otherwise fit enough to be at school. These can only be administered if a consent form has been signed, which is available from the office. Please ensure that you:

  • Only provide medicines with a prescription label on the container which clearly shows your child’s name and the time and size of the dose.
  • Leave the medicine and form with a member of staff at the academy reception

Children suffering from asthma can keep inhalers close at hand – please print their name on the inhaler, and make sure we have details about the circumstances when your child may need to use it.

If I wanted to speak to a school nurse - is there someone I can contact?

There is a service provided in Norfolk and you can contact the School Nurse Single Point of Referral team on the following telephone number: 01362 654916

How do I give feedback on Upwell Academy?

Ofsted’s Parent View website allows you to give your views and read the results of previous parent questionnaires.

Our staff are always happy to talk to parents about our academy both about what we are doing well and what you would like us to improve. If you have any feedback that you would like a response to, please come in and talk to us or book an appointment. You can contact us in person, by phone or online.