West Sussex school attendance above national average

More than nine out of ten West Sussex pupils are back in their school, well above the national average.

The vast majority of pupils returned to school last month (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images) SUS-201013-094216001
The vast majority of pupils returned to school last month (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images) SUS-201013-094216001

Schools began to reopen nationally from September 4 and attendance across the county has been encouraging, according to West Sussex County Council.

The average pupil attendance last week (5-9 October) was 93.2 per cent for West Sussex, figures from schools returning attendance show, above the national average of 89 per cent.

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The number of pupils with Education, Health & Care Plans – those who have additional needs – in school in West Sussex was 87 per cent last week, again above the national average of 84 per cent.

For those children who aren’t able to be in school currently because of COVID-19, teachers are working hard to ensure their access to learning continues.

Nigel Jupp, the county council’s cabinet member for education and skills, said: “I’m delighted that so many West Sussex pupils are now back in their school after such a long period away due to the coronavirus pandemic. Students of all ages are adapting very well to being back in school and to the new safety measures that have been put in place.

“Much of that is down to the care and support of their teachers which has continued throughout. I have witnessed many examples of schools going above and beyond to help their students settle back in and I thank them for it greatly. Headteachers I have spoken to have all reported that pupils are enjoying being in school and enjoying spending time with their classmates and friends again.

“For children who are well, school continues to be the best place for them to learn and socialise. Sadly, we know that this pandemic isn’t over and we will continue to support every school through it.”

Before schools reopened, West Sussex County Council launched new Back to School webpages with videos and resources to support pupils, parents and carers with the return. The well received pages have so far had more than 20,000 visits, and a video created by pupils and teachers has been watched over 7,000 times.

The www.westsussex.gov.uk/backtoschool pages remain active and contain support for pupils’ emotional wellbeing and help for children with special educational needs and disabilities and their parents.