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Attendance Policy and Procedure

This Attendance Policy will be reviewed annually by the Management Committee. Any amendments require the approval of our Board of Directors.

Introduction and Scope

1.1 Inchbald recognises that monitoringattendance is an active part of studentsupport,encouraging engagement,learningand helping to avoid academic risk and as such is inplace to encourage student success.

1.2 This policy aims to facilitate an anticipatory approach to academic risktosupport studentsand to that end,this Attendance Policy applies to all students at the Inchbald School ofDesign including those on partner validated courses.

1.3 Good attendance and engagement is also a requirement of Inchbald's academic validatingpartner,certainassociated Professional Bodies, UKVI (United Kingdom Visa andImmigration department) and financial and funding bodies such as Student FinanceEngland.

1.4 Any sanctions in place for poor or non-attendance will be applied fairly and consistentlyacross all courses.However, for students studying in the UK under UKVI arrangements(visa) sanctions could invoke withdrawal of sponsorship and/or cancellation of a visaresulting in the requirement for a student to return to their home country.

1.5 The School recognises the importance of this policy in regard to those enrolled via theStudent Route/ Visa conditions and its legal obligation to report non-attending students toUKVI should non-attendance exceed 10 consecutive contacts.

1.6 The Schoolalso recognises that non-attendance may also require the immediate repaymentof loans and grants awarded to a student from public funds (Student Finance England) andmay terminate studies for any student who persistently fails to attend or perform therequired course work for which they are registered.

1.7 It should be noted thatInchbalddeliversvalidated undergraduateand postgraduatedegrees which are developed and taught byInchbaldbut validated by our academicpartner.Thatacademic partner beingWrexham Glyndwr University (WGU).A studentenrolled on these courses may be subject tofurtherWGU regulationsaffecting this policy.

1.8 The School'sAudit Committee with reference to theAcademic Board is responsible forensuring that the information and any advice or guidanceapplicable to this policyisclear,current and accurate.

Policy Statement and procedures

2.1 Studentswho enrol on a course at Inchbald will be expected to undertake the course withthe full intention of attaining the qualification.

2.2 It is the student's responsibility to report any changes of circumstances that may impactattendance. Any failure to do so may result in an exclusion from a course, this isparticularly relevant for those studying on a VISA and therefore subject to the StudentRoute / UKVI regulations.Students permitted to study in the UK via UKVI should consulttheadd relevant website.

2.3 The School determines the contact it monitors but students will normallybe requiredattend ALL scheduled learningassociated with their course including but not limited to,lectures, studio,tutorials,studio round table,assessment and presentation sessions.

2.4 Students who qualify for work observation and placements are expected to attend as perthe arrangements made between the Inchbald and the professional mentor/studio.

2.5 Attendance on trips and visits will be monitored.

2.6 Unsatisfactory attendance is identified as failure to attend any sessions regularly without asatisfactory reason of which the tutor has been informed in advance or as soon after themissed session as possible

2.7 An approved absence must be requested in advance, detailed on the Absence Requestform and signed by a senior staff member for Course Directorapproval.

2.8 If an approved absence invokes Extenuating Circumstances this will be considered withinthe definition of EC's as detailed in the student handbook

Implementation and Monitoring

3.1 The implementation of this policy is managed viaschool and facultystrategies which aredesigned to be easily adhered to.

3.2 All students are required to sign in and out of the School for the morning session and againfor the afternoon session. The register is located in reception and will be monitored by theSchool secretaries. The register will be checked after start of class in both sessions andstudent absence or late arrival will be noted.Inchbald is a small enough institution tomonitor day to day attendance in this manner.

3.3 All students must adhere to attendance monitoring and as such ensure that theirattendance has been noted for in house and external activities such as visits.

3.4 Information from the register will be recorded to allow for the collation of attendance datafor each student. All HE institutionsare required to produce attendance and engagementrecords as part of their remit to the Office for Students and UKVI.

3.5 Academic staff are to ensure that attendance is monitored at the sessions they teachsupported byadministrative personnel who are required to inform and update staff on anyincomplete or inaccurate recording of attendance.

3.6 Staff, academic and administrative, will review attendance regularly, across a module ordefined teaching session or project and flag up any student they identify as a cause forconcern. This is defined as,

  • Attendance / engagement falls below expected levels,
  • Conditions and / or submission are regularly not met or are late. (this may be the case forexample when a student is re-submitting work or repeating assignments)

3.7 Students will be contacted via the following sequence.

Stage 1. Administrative staff will notify a student if attendance is giving cause for concern. Thiswould be identified by a repeated absence but across less than 10 teaching sessions. They will berequired to attenda meeting with a member of staff responsible for teaching within themodule/session that they have failed to fully attend. This discussion will concern identifying thecause for non-attendance.At this stage Inchbald would be looking to support the student to rectifythis issue.

Stage 2. If there is no improvementtoattendanceand engagement,teaching and/or administrativestaff will convene a meetingto determine the reasons behind this and set up a strategy to:

Set targets to help students complete work outstanding

Schedule regular meetings to supportascheduleof support measures

Examine other non-academic issues that may be affecting performance

Stage 3.If no action has been taken by thestudent or there is no improvement after stage 2 (judgingthe success of stage 2 will depend on the particular strategies put in place) then a meeting chairedby the Course Director will be arranged. The following will be required to attendor in the caseof thestudio tutor submit notes concerning the student's performance,

Course Director / Chair (an Assistant Director can deputise)

Studio tutor, current to the module in question

Admissions secretary

theStudent

The purpose of this meeting would be to draw up a further strategy of support but on theunderstanding that failure to take advantage of this strategy could end with the student being askedto withdraw.This meeting may instigate the following steps, thisis not an exhaustive list,

Setting a specific timetable for the completion of outstanding work,

The repeat of a module or semester,

Transfer to another course and/or potentially part time study.

Students would need to be made aware that they can be advisedand/or required to leave a course ifstage 3 is unsuccessful.

In this instance the School will have fulfilled their obligation to offer the student every reasonableassistance and may feel that the student does not have sufficient time or has acquired sufficient skillto complete the course. As such the student will be asked to withdraw.

In the case of application of Extenuating Circumstances to any of the above stages please refer tothe Student Handbook for the course.

For information and procedures in regard to fees, outstanding or already paid, please refer to the Financial Policy published on our website.

3.8 Note on students attending following Student route / UKVI regulations.

Students following UKVI regulations who have missed 10 consecutive contacts or sessions willautomatically be referred to the UKVI. This is a requirement of the UKVI and failure by the institutionto do so may jeopardise their ability to sponsor visa students in the future. Referral to UKVI mayresult in the cancellation of the visa and therefore termination of the course of study. Studentswould then be required to return to their country of origin.

Responsible Parties

4.1 The Academic Board will be responsible for the content of theAttendancepolicy in termswhat isdeemed required attendance, extenuating circumstancesand academic performance.

4.2 TheAuditcommittee will be responsible for ensuring that allpublished material is accurate andappliesacross the school.

4.3 The Management committee will be responsible for reviewing this Policy annually.

4.4 The Board of Directors will need to approve any changes to this policy before coming into force.

Reference Points

Internal

  • StudentHandbook
  • Financial Policy
  • Terms and Conditions

External

  • Wrexham Glyndwr University Policy

Version History

Appendix 1: Student Attendance Record

Guidance notes for staff

Before completing this form, you shouldre-read the Attendance policy.

Include all details of the attendance lapses and extenuating circumstances the student may haveoffered.

This record is to be keptcontinuously on this same form as one document for a full view of thestages to any decision arising

Student Attendance 2020/21

From March 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemicInchbald has been delivering its courses via a virtual platform.

Consequently, the usualprocessesfor recordingstudents' attendancearenot possible and thereforean interim system ofreporting attendance via a 'Zoom register' has been put in place.

This system enables staff to seewhena student has loggedinto thevarioussessions. Studio andlecture sessions by In-house staff are recorded and students log into the session individually, prior tothe session starting.Students are required to be visually present within the Zoom session.Inchbaldemploys many outside lecturers employed on a freelance basis, in these cases a full time academicor administration staff will host the session and be able to monitor and record any absences.

Inchbaldhas committed tothis virtualapproach to teaching and learning comprising a mix ofZoomhostedgrouplearning andindividual tutorial, which mirrors the In house system in operation priorto the Pandemic. Inchbald has twenty years' experience of teaching On line and is in a good positionto instigate virtual learning.

All processes in placemust addressgovernment designatedpriority areasfor theeducation sector:UKVI Tier IV compliance; supporting Public Health England's Track and Trace system; identifyingstudents who may require welfare and/or academic support.

Relevant from this further no-consult OfS and UKVI docs forther

Process:

Attendance:

Attendance at elements of direct engagement/'meaningful contacts' (e.g. seminars, lectures,Academic Adviser meetings, Student Life Centre engagements, etc.),

-First and foremost, ensure that we can respond to student support needs that may arise.

The existing policy of escalating School communications and meetings (included below, Appendix A)would still apply; one of the aims here is to keep as close as possible to normal practices.

Identifying students of concern:

Report 1: Engagement

-School Offices run weekly or fortnightly (determined by School) Canvas reports to identify studentswith low engagement.

-School Offices can run these reports usingCognos (Topic Based Resources > Student > StudentAdministration > Student Engagement Monitoring > Canvas Engagement).

This Cognos report allows time ranges to be set and is likely the preferred option. o

Alternatively, reports can be run from Canvasand guidance on doing this is provided as a separateattachment ('Using the Administrative Reports in Canvas'). Several possible reports are included inthe guidance, but the recommended one would be is Last User Access (this is the data that theCognos report uses).

-Students identified as having had no engagement with Canvas during a 2-week period should thenbe checked against Attendance Reports (Report 2 below).-Tier IV students and all other studentsare monitored in the same way in this process,the points below indicate the change in regulatoryrequirements for Tier IV students.

-All students (including Tier IV students): if there is no Canvas engagement and attendance is belownormal School expectations this will trigger Stage 1 of existing attendance policy.

-Tier IV students: if there is no Canvas engagement or attendance during a 2-week period as well astriggering Stage 1 of existing attendance policy (as above) a 60 day window (30 days for distancelearners) will begin at the end of which, if there is no evidence of re-engagement, would lead towithdrawal of sponsorship (unless exceptional circumstances apply).

Example process in context of Tier IV students:

-2 weeks of no engagement starts Stage 1 of standard escalation process (contact student toexpress concern etc.).

-2 further weeks of no engagement starts Stage 2 (or Stage 3 for distance learners, includinginvitation to SSPC).

-2 further weeks ofno engagement starts Stage 3 for non-distance learners.

-SSPC must take place within 30/60 days of starting Stage 1.

Report 2: Attendance

-Whilst Canvas reports are the first and primary means of monitoring Engagement and Attendance,we should also run regular Cognos reports to check for attendance at 'meaningful contacts' (forexample, face-to-face and synchronous on-line teaching sessions, Academic Advising meetings, SLCcontact, etc.). Frequency is determined by School but may be less frequentthan typical due toEngagement Reports.

-Where attendance is below normal School standards ('Identifying Poor Attendance andEngagement'; Attendance, Engagement and Absence Policy) and gives cause for concern Schools areadvised to make further enquiries of the student as a supportive measure and, if concerns remain,go to Stage 1 of existing attendance policy.

-This aims to identify students who may have welfare/academic support needs, where Canvasaccess reports do not provide sufficient detail.

Recording Attendance Registers:

Attendance should be recorded at 'meaningful contacts', following normal School definitions,whether these are conducted face-to-face or synchronously on-line.

-In addition, any contact with a 'face-to-face' element (e.g. blended/rotational lectures, seminars,etc.) must record attendance, which will help to support the PHE Track and Trace system.

-However, for Health and Safety in relation to COVID-19, attendance recording cannot use physicalregisters that are circulated between or handled by multiple participants.

Alternative means of recording attendance are advised, examples of which include (as determinedby School or tutor):

a) using the University Sussex App to publish/provide a PIN code during the classthat studentswould then enter in their own Sussex App; this would automatically enter attendance data intoSussex Direct (guidance on using Sussex App to follow);

b) tutor holds a single register (e.g.with gallery view) either physical or using Sussex Direct on-screen and tutor completes this during the class duration (ideally for smaller group teaching).

c) For synchronous on-line sessions, using a Zoom participant list or the Sussex App with PIN (a)would be exemplar options.

Appendix A: Existing Policy on Contact, Reporting and Withdrawal

Stage 1 School administrative staff will contact the student to notify them that there is a concernand remind them of attendance and engagement requirements.If the student has missed a highnumber of monitored contact points (but less than 10) they will be referred to their academicadvisor or supervisor to discuss their attendance and engagement, or to the Student Life Centre todiscuss any non-academic issues.

Stage 2 Where a student does not improve their attendance and engagement following Stage 1, theywill be contacted by the DOSE expressing the School's increased concern. Where a Tier IV student'sattendance or engagement is very low the DOSE will usually invite the student to a School progressmeeting where they can:

  • agree targets for the student and regular further meetings to review progress;
  • review the University's PREVENT policy where necessary;
  • discuss other routes of referral for non-academic support.

Stage 3

If no action is taken or improvement seen on the part of the student after Stage 1 and/or Stage 2,students should be sent/emailed a letter signed by the DOSE advising that their continuedregistration has been referred to the School Student Progress Committee (SSPC). Students may besignposted to services such as the Student Life Centre or Student Support Unit for non-academicmatters.

Appendix B: Summary of New/Future UKVI requirements: Below degree level-at least 15 hoursclassroom-based attendance per week. Needs investigating and recording if less than 85%attendance in any given month. Withdraw sponsorship if attendance less than 70% for 3 consecutivemonths and no exceptional or evidenced reasons. Degree level and above. Sponsors must:

  • Have a single academic engagement policy that applies consistently to international studentsacross their institution. It may also include home students and can differentiate between study atdifferent levels.
  • Note individual records with reasons for lack of engagement and any steps taken to get thestudent to re-engage
  • Withdraw sponsorship (unless exceptional circumstances apply) where the student fails to re-engage with their studies within 60 days (30 days for distance learning) of the first contact from theirsponsor regarding their lack of academic engagement*Sponsors must also be able to demonstrate:
  • how the policy is being applied
  • that systems are in place to monitor academic engagement
  • what information is being recorded to confirm that students are academically engaging
  • what actions are expected when a lack of academic engagement is identified
  • that they have a robust system in place to identify any student who has a period of non-engagement which exceeds 60 days in duration and the action they will take to support the studentto re-engage
  • that they have a clear policy on when non-engagement will lead to withdrawal of sponsorship.
  • a policy for work placements/research programmes/field trips; postgraduate doctor or dentistcourses; study abroad programmes; dissertation periods with no taught elements; Student UnionSabbatical Officers.
  • a procedure for notifying UKVI and withdrawing sponsorship if a student has deferred studies formore than 60 days unless exceptional circumstances apply