A News story by 10 May 2024

North Birmingham Academy has recently achieved a remarkable milestone, placing them in the top 10% of similar schools nationwide for attendance according to the FFT. This accomplishment is a testament to the hard work of the leadership, Attendance Team and wider staff, as well as the collaborative efforts of pupils and parents in recognising the importance of good attendance and its profound impact on a child’s future prospects.

One parent of a Year 9 student said – The Team at NBA go above and beyond and I’m grateful to them for supporting with early help to provide a support worker for our family. They have been a huge support.’

From the autumn of 2021 to the autumn of 2023, North Birmingham Academy has demonstrated a significant improvement in attendance, rising from 89.1% to an impressive 95%. This achievement marks a historic first for the academy, showcasing their commitment to fostering a culture of consistent attendance among their student body.

Head teacher Jo Paddock said:

‘Improving attendance at the academy has been a priority as it contributes to academic success, facilitates knowledge acquisition, fosters social interaction, builds routine and discipline, and prepares our students for the future; ensuring they leave with the best possible currency, opening doors to a plethora of opportunities in their chosen pathway.’

Several key strategies have been instrumental in driving this positive change:

Tenacious Leadership and Policy Adherence:

Central to the success of North Birmingham Academy’s attendance improvement initiative is the steadfast dedication of its attendance and leadership team in rigorously implementing attendance policies. By maintaining consistency and holding all stakeholders accountable, the academy has set clear expectations for attendance, ensuring that students understand the importance of regular school attendance.

Engagement with disenfranchised families:

Recognising the diverse challenges faced by families in the community, North Birmingham Academy has prioritised building trust and fostering positive relationships with disengaged families. Through proactive outreach efforts, the academy has effectively engaged with parents and guardians, providing support and resources to overcome barriers to attendance.

Effective Transition Support:

For students returning to school after extended periods of absence, North Birmingham Academy has implemented comprehensive transition programs aimed at facilitating a smooth reintegration into full-time education. By addressing any underlying issues and providing personalised support, the academy ensures that returning students feel supported and empowered to succeed academically.

Transparent Communication and Incentives:

North Birmingham Academy recognises the importance of regular communication with all stakeholders regarding the significance of attendance. By consistently reinforcing the link between attendance and academic outcomes, the academy motivates students and parents to prioritise attendance. Additionally, the academy celebrates incremental successes and offers incentives for consistent attendance, fostering a positive and encouraging atmosphere within the school community.

Collaboration with the Local Authority:

To address persistent attendance issues, North Birmingham Academy collaborates closely with the local authority to expedite and streamline the consequences for non-attendance cases. By working in partnership with relevant agencies, the academy ensures that legal interventions are promptly and effectively pursued when necessary, sending a clear message about the importance of attendance.

Michelle Scott, Education Director said:

‘As North Birmingham Academy continues to celebrate its success in improving pupil attendance, the impact of these efforts extends far beyond the school gates. By instilling a culture of attendance excellence, the academy equips its students with the foundational skills and habits necessary for lifelong success.’