Parents and Carers Information

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Absence
From time to time, you may need to request that your child has time off college. An ‘authorised’ absence is one where we as a college support and agree with the reasons for why your child needs to miss college. The broad guidance we use is that the reason for the absence is so unique, or has such social or spiritual value, that it outweighs the loss of teaching time. ‘Unauthorised’ absences would cover taking holidays during term time, family days out or going shopping. In serious or repeated cases of ‘unauthorised absence’, we may consider the use of a Fixed Penalty Notice (click for more details), but we will talk to you about this first to see if there’s anything we can do to improve matters. Our message is simple – assuming they are well, we would love to see your child in college for every one of the 190 days we are open each year.
Admissions
All admissions are by referral only via West Sussex County Council. Our admissions policy can be found on our ‘Policies and Procedures’ page but should you require further information please email us using the Contact Us form.
Adverse Weather Procedure

In the event of disruption caused by adverse weather conditions (ie heavy snow), the prime concern of WSAPC will always be the safety of the pupils and staff.  The decision whether or not to send a pupil to one of our Centres if it remains open to learners during poor weather conditions must be at the discretion of the parents/carers, taking into account factors such as local road conditions and the availability of childcare.

The WSAPC aims to remain open in the event of adverse weather conditions.  We feel this is important for those parents who are relying on us to provide for their children in term time. In the event of extreme conditions, we cannot guarantee a normal school day.

However, there are certain factors which may lead to a WSAPC Centre closing, such as whether:

logo there are enough members of staff to be able to provide satisfactory care;

logo the severity of the weather conditions is on such a major scale that it is unlikely that many people will be able, physically, to make it into the college;

logo the college can provide lunch for the pupils;

logo the college grounds are sufficiently safe for pupils, parents/carers and staff;

logo the college has sufficient heating;

logothe college has lighting and hot water across the site;

logoexternal agencies, e.g. police, local government, motoring organisations, etc, are advising against school travel in the relevant region.

logoTaxi companies/bus routes are able to operate.

If the Centre your child attends is to be open, we will post this on the website as soon as possible and normally by 7.00am on the day as well as notifying you of this by Parentmail.

If, for the reasons outlined above, the safest or most expedient judgment is to close the Centre your child attends, a ‘Closure Day’ will be declared and we will post this on the website as soon as possible and normally by 7.00am on the day as well as notifying you of this by Parentmail.

Closure notices will also be made available on the West Sussex County Council website:

http://www.westsussex.gov.uk/learning/schools_ages_4-16/emergency_closures.aspx

When checking websites regularly, please remember to refresh for updates.

The series of frequently asked questions below should answer any queries.

Will parents/carers be contacted in the event of adverse weather conditions?

Our website www.apcollege.co.uk  should be consulted regularly.   Remember to refresh for updates.  We will also endeavour to contact parents/carers via Parentmail to ensure a clear message is sent.

Do I need to contact the Centre my child attends?

If the WSAPC Centre is classed as ‘open’ but parents/carers decide not to send their child, please contact the relevant unit to inform them of absence (see contact details on our website).

To travel to school or not?

Parents/carers have to decide whether it is safe and desirable for them to make the journey into the WSAPC.

Will you close all WSAPC Centres?

We will always endeavour to keep all our Centres open but their geographical location may affect the ability to continue teaching in a Centre as weather conditions affect Centres differently.  For example, if weather conditions are poor in Crawley and a decision is made to close the Crawley Centre, this does not necessarily mean any other Centre will close.  We will ensure information on our website and messages to parents/carers clearly state which Centres are closing and which remain open to students.

What will happen if weather conditions worsen during the school day?

If weather conditions deteriorate during the school day we may take the decision to close the college earlier than usual.  This would be communicated to you via the website, Parentmail and telephone call.  If pupils travel to their Centre by taxi, changes to taxi timetables will be made by the WSAPC.

If adverse weather conditions are forecast please ensure that you are checking the website and parentmail messages regularly and that you have made available to the WSAPC an emergency contact number so we can advise you of any early closures.

If, in the event of an early closure, parents/carers wish to collect pupils from one of our Centres they are welcome to do so, but please ensure you inform a member of staff before leaving to ensure effective recording.  Staff will supervise pupils until parents/carers or taxis are able to get to the college, but please remember that members of staff will be also be anxious to get home if the weather and road conditions are poor.

Learning

Although we are a large campus in a large geographical county, we aim to provide consistent education and support in all of our centres. Every child is therefore taught the core subjects in English, maths and science as well as a variety of experiences including PE, art, outdoor activities and cooking.

The aim in all of our centres is to work with the pupil on their individual needs, for both their academic and their social and emotional requirements, thus developing their ability to make informed choices for their future.

We seek to understand where the child is academically when entering our college and then set aspirational targets to help them move on to other educational settings, as well as addressing the social and emotional needs that are blocking their pathways to success.

Every child is different and so it can take one pupil a short period of time to address the issues and then move on quickly, and it can take another child longer; depending on the circumstances of the individual. Whatever the case, WSAPC will work with local schools and the local authority to support the child’s next steps in education.

Full details of our curriculum can be found on the Information page, under ‘Curriculum’.

Lunch Time and Free School Meals
Lunch Time

This school believes in providing a varied, balanced and healthy lunch-time meal to all students. At most of our centres, this is done through our Cook and Eat Programme where the young people are involved in every aspect from planning and preparation to cooking and serving of the meal. Please see our Learning pages for more information of accreditation for the programme. All students dine with their peers and staff to support social engagement and relationship building.

Currently Cook and Eat is not offered at our Burgess Hill centre. A daily hot meal is provided to all students by Chartwells. A menu can be accessed here.

The cost of every meal is £2.30 and, whist there is no expectation to pay, a contribution the cost of the meal would be gratefully received; please contact the school office to make a contribution.

Free School Meals

The school receives extra funding, known as the Pupil Premium; to support students who are eligible for Free School Meals.

From 6 April 2011, children whose parents receive one of the following benefits are entitled to receive free school meals:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Income-related employment and support allowance (this benefit was introduced 27 October 2008)
  • Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Child Tax Credit (provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit) and the Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
  • have an annual income that does not exceed £16,190 (as assessed by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs). Note – from 1 May 2009 where a parent is entitled to Working Tax Credit during the four-week period immediately after their employment ceases, or after they start to work less than 16 hours per week, their children are entitled to free school lunches.
IF I GET? DO WE GET FREE MEALS?
Child Tax Credit

Household income above £16,190)

No
Child Tax Credit

Household income below £16,190)

YES
Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit No
Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit on a four week run on Yes
Working Tax Credit

Household income below £16,190)

No
No Tax Credits but income is below £16,190 No – you need to be getting one of the benefits listed above

To find out more or to fill out the application form on-line click here.

To get a paper copy to fill out, please contact the school office.

Parentmail

Attention all parents and carers! Communicating with you is an important part of what we do, making sure you get the correct information about activities, events and school news that really matters is something we care about. As you know, the school uses ParentMail, a service used by over 6,000 schools, nurseries and children’s clubs to communicate to parents.

To log in to your ParentMail feed click here.

We’d like to encourage all parents to download the Parentmail APP as there are a number of benefits both to you and the school.

  •  You don’t need to login to pick up messages or attachments when you use the App.
  • The App stores all the messages we send you in one place.
  • Every message sent arrives as an instant alert on your mobile.
  • You help save us money!

You can download the App for free from either the Apple APP store or the Google Play Store. For help with your ParentMail account click here. Please watch the video below to see the benefits of ParentMail for parents:

 

Term Dates 2017/2018

Please follow the link below to view our term dates for next academic year. Additionally there will be INSET days where the college is closed to students, to be advised.

2017_2018_term_dates

Term Dates 2018/2019

Please follow the link below to view our term dates for next academic year. Additionally there will be INSET days where the college is closed to students, to be advised.

2018_19_calendar_view_of_academic_year

Transport

We encourage all our students in KS3 & KS4 to travel to and from school independently. In the majority of cases this will be via public transport. Transport for pupils who live further than 3 miles from their nearest centre will be provided free of charge as per the West Sussex County Council (WSCC) transport policy available here. We appreciate that, for some, travel to our centres can be difficult and to enable the best possible opportunities for our students we work closely with our colleagues at WSCC to offer modes of transport that are both suitable and . Currently these include:

  • Bus and Train passes
  • Bus and Train Passes for Primary children and their parents to enable them to escort them to and from school
  • Taxi (Limited to special cases only)
  • Bike Scheme – WSCC will provide a voucher for singly registered pupils who live between 3 and 5 miles of the school

 

More information can be accessed via home to school transport WSCC here.

Uniform

WSAPC has high expectations of our students and believe a good school uniform presents an image of the highest standards and expectations. Uniform is also an expected standard in most schools across West Sussex and in order to support young people to return to their mainstream school, it’s important that an expectation to continue with this standard is adhered too.

We ask for parent/carers commitment in supporting your child / young person to adhere to our policy.

From September 2017, there will be an expectation for singly registered WSAPC students to wear school uniform. Students who come to us on short stay programmes (60 day placements) should wear their mainstream school uniform.

WSAPC Dress Code / Uniform (Primary & Secondary)

  • Black Trousers / Skirt / Shorts
  • APC Navy Sweatshirt
  • APC Navy Polo Shirt
  • Black Trainers / Schools Shoes / Plimsolls

WSAPC uniform can be purchased from Reception. Full details are below:

Item Size Item Price
Sweatshirt Age 5-6 £7.60
  Age 7-8 £7.60
Age 9-10 £7.60
Age 11-12 £7.60
Small £9.65
Medium £9.65
Large £9.65
Extra Large £9.65
Polo Shirt Age 5-6 £6.77
  Age 7-8 £6.77
Age 9-10 £6.77
Age 11-12 £6.77
Small £7.87
Medium £7.87
Large £7.87
Extra Large £7.87
Useful Information

ParentInfo is a vital resource for parents and carers with easy-to-digest content. The service aims to deliver information on a whole range of parenting themes, the emphasis being on helping parents and carers develop their children’s resilience to the risks and pressures they face in today’s world. The articles and videos cover difficult topics about sex, relationships and the internet, body image and peer pressure, as well as broad parenting topics like ‘how much sleep do teenagers need?’ ParentInfo is a collaboration between the National Crime Agency CEOP Command and The Parent Zone.

 

Childnet International is a non-profit organisation working with others to help make the internet a great and safe place for children. Find out more about the resources and information available here.