In this article you can find current information on the attendance codes and how to use them, including for planned absences and distance learning, plus a link to our guidance on attendance reporting.
For further details, you can see full guidance for schools around Covid-19 here. For attendance guidance from the DfE, you can read their guide here. You can see what questions the DfE are asking in their daily form here.
- Student Profile: Action: Attendance: Administer All Students - edit attendance marks from the Bulk Edit Marks pages, open registers and change register settings
- Teaching: Administer - create, edit or delete timetable slots, import from TimeTabler, assign someone as the academic lead or to one lesson to be able to take the register
- Academic Structure: Administer - add courses and assign staff as the academic lead
- Student: Communications: Administer - send communications from the lesson dashboard
If you don't have the permission to complete an action, you can ask one of your school staff to give you the permission using these instructions.
Managing timetabling and taking attendance
For students who are not attending school, you may be running online classes or supplying work to them. The DfE is not currently collecting information on attendance for online classes and work. As such, any students who are not physically present on-site due to covid-related absences should be marked with the correct absence code, regardless if they are attending online classes.
We advise only marking students as present if they are physically in school to prevent safeguarding issues (e.g. in case of a fire evacuation).
Although it is not currently possible to track attendance for online classes in Arbor, we integrate with a number of distance learning providers - you can see how to set up a connection here. You can also join the discussion in the Arbor Community to see how other schools are managing online classes.
Where children are not able to attend school as parents are following clinical and/or public health advice, the absence should map back to the X code, meaning this code does not count as an absence (authorised or unauthorised) for statistical purposes. These are the codes currently available for use in registers and interventions:
- X01 - Non-compulsory school-age pupil not required to be in school
- X02 - Self-isolating COVID-19 symptoms
- X05 - Quarantine requirement
- X06 - Shielding
- X07 - Government attendance restrictions
- X08 - Advised by Public Health Directors not to attend school
- X09 - NHS test and trace required self isolation
- X - Non-statutory school-age absence or covid-related absence
- I01 - Illness
- I02 - Illness - Confirmed case of COVID-19
- I - Illness
For full details of what each code means that you can print out, please look here: Covid-related attendance codes to use for 2021/2022
We expect schools not to use the C code for Covid-related absence, but discuss with the DfE if unsure. For Secondary students not expected to be attending school for lessons during the first week of the term due to testing, you should use the Y code - you can use planned absences to fill in this code.
Teachers can access the registers in the usual way, and input present, absent or late marks. If your school restricts the attendance marks available to teachers, you can also use the Bulk Edit Marks pages to edit any student marks (once the register has been opened), and you can also use these attendance marks in planned absences.
Need to give someone access to take the registers? Follow the instructions in this article: Giving permission for other staff to take attendance registers
Filling in marks for students not attending
You can use planned absences for students who are absent due to Covid-19.
If a whole class has been sent home due to potential contact within the school or who are undergoing testing, you will need to mark any classes that are not running with the correct absence code. The quickest way to do this is to add a planned absence for the students for the full duration they will not attend school for with the correct Covid-related absence code as the pre-fill mark.
Whenever the class is due to take place, you will need to open the register for the planned absence marks to pull through as this will not update marks automatically. Go to Students > Attendance, click into that class' register and click the Open Register button to open it and pull through the marks. You can then edit marks from the Bulk Edit Marks pages.
Reporting on attendance
For full details of how to get figures you'll need for the DfE's form, and how to report on Covid-related attendance over time in this article: Reporting on Covid-19 attendance
Communicating with students and guardians
Academic leads can send emails or SMS directly from the lesson dashboard of a class to quickly notify them of any changes. You can see how to communicate with students and guardians here.
You can also continue to use the Covid-19 Dashboard to follow up with students who do not come in if you have the School: General Admin: Administer permission.
The filters on the Students tab will be set to display all your year groups plus identified vulnerable groups from your Settings tab.
- Click the arrows in the Mark column to group certain marks together
- Tick the boxes next to the students to follow up with
- Click the blue pencil and select the method you’ll use to message primary guardians.
You’ll then be taken to the New Mail Merge creator, where you can draft and send your message from, with these student’s primary guardians selected as the recipients. You can also use communication templates from this page, click here for more information.