Participant Attendance, Non-Completion and Deferral Policy
1.0 Policy Principle
The Participant Attendance, Non-Completion & Deferral Policy and procedures has been developed as part of iungo Solutions’ commitment to providing a supportive learning environment. This enables Participants who have chosen to study with us to achieve their full potential.
Our Participants invest their time and their support network’s time when they choose to join a programme. We will ensure that appropriate procedures are in place to monitor their attendance and act upon absenteeism so that attendees can be aware of the impact of non-attendance.
iungo Solutions commits to designing and delivering it’s learning programmes to minimise attendance barriers relating to transport, care for dependants and additional learning requirements and will work with Participants to address foreseeable barriers on a one-to-one basis.
The Participant Attendance Policy applies to all programme Participants no matter the programme length. The implementation of the Participant Attendance Policy is the collective responsibility of iungo Solutions’ employees, contractors and volunteers, herein referred to as Representatives.
2.0 Policy Requirements
2.1 Participant Attendance Expectations
Participants are required to attend all learning sessions associated with their programme; it should be assumed that sessions are mandatory unless explicitly specified in advance. Examples of learning sessions include workshops, tutorials and structured learning events whether in person or remote. Attendance may also be required at additional activities outside of the usual scheduled sessions, e.g. support sessions, lunch and learns, and catch up sessions.
The expected attendance level of Participants on any programme is at least 90%.
Some Programmes may operate a “Managed Hybrid” model which imposes an additional requirement to attend a certain percentage of sessions in-person to achieve the attendance requirements.
Participants should arrive on time for sessions and remain for the duration of the session. Late arrival at and early departure from teaching sessions is disruptive, discourteous, unprofessional and unfair to other Participants. Lateness and early departures will be recorded on the register.
Registers will be taken for all sessions, in the morning and again in the afternoon where applicable, and the mode of attendance will be recorded. Representatives should ensure that registers are marked within the first 10 minutes of the session.
All Participants will be provided with a schedule of learning sessions in their programme before the first delivery day. This will usually be communicated via the Programme Handbook.
The attendance key is provided in Appendix I.
Attendance records may be shared with the participant’s employer or prospective employer upon request and in accordance with the Participant Agreement. All Participants may access their attendance record by submitting their request in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org.
2.2.1 Authorised Absence
Authorised absence is defined as an unavoidable absence arising from:
- Sickness or injury which is sufficiently serious to make programme attendance impossible or unsafe (Medical note is produced or self certification for the first 3 days)
- A medical appointment which cannot reasonably be attended outside Programme hours
- Civil responsibilities, such as Jury Service
- A visit to a university open day or career related interview
- Attendance at a funeral or wedding of a close relative
- Participation in a recognised religious holiday
- Attendance at a probation meeting or other external agency meeting
- Exam attendance
- Unavoidable care issue relating to a dependant(s) (online attendance would be expected in this instance)
Evidence must be submitted to support absence requests.
Authorised absences are recorded on the register as “A”. It is important to note that an authorised absence will impact on the Participant’s overall attendance rate, but authorisations and reasons for absence will be considered by the Programme Tutor and Operations Team (if applicable) in the management of Participant Attendance.
2.2.3 Unauthorised Absence
Absences are deemed unauthorised when the Participant fails to inform the Programme Tutor that they will be away from a learning session, before the event.
The following reasons for absence will not be authorised and will receive an unauthorised absence mark:
- Sickness or injury (No medical
- Transport difficulties
- Driving lessons
- GP/Dentist/Hospital appointment (Can be amended to authorised absence if proof of appointment is shown)
- Family/Personal holidays within term time.
Any unauthorised absences will be recorded by the tutor on the register as “U”.
Participants should arrive on time for all learning sessions and remain for the duration of the session. Late arrival at and early departure from learning sessions is disruptive, discourteous, unprofessional and unfair to other Participants.
Participants arriving more than 10 minutes late for a session will be marked as late and will be recorded in the register with an L+ or VL+ indicating late in-person attendance or late virtual attendance, respectively.
Participants will be admitted into sessions (in-person and online), however, the Tutor should discuss the late attendance at the end of the session and provide some catch up work.
2.3 Reporting Absence
It is the Participant’s responsibility to proactively communicate their absence with their Programme Tutor. All absences must be communicated via email@example.com prior to the planned period of absence. Notification must be provided 24 hours before their first absence and must include the reason for absence and planned date of return. If the reason
The Programme Tutor will determine whether the absence is authorised and will notify the Participant of their decision and any potential implications.
If a Participant fails to correctly communicate the absence within the required timeframes, their absence will be recorded as unauthorised.
2.4 Managing Attendance
Programme Tutors will actively manage attendance related matters with Participants on an individual basis. Attendance related matters will be recorded in weekly Programme Reports for monitoring purposes, and escalated when appropriate.
Programme Tutors will respond to absence records that approach the acceptable minimum attendance (90%) or where patterns of lateness, absence, or unplanned and/or unauthorised online attendance occur.
The Attendance Intervention Triggers are set out below for each type of programme:
- 1 day Programme: Lateness is acted on and the Participant/ participant called to confirm attendance
- 2 – 5 day Programmes: 1 ½ day absence must be acted on to review failure to attend and to aid catch up with the missed learning.
- 1 – 3 week Programmes: 1 day of absence will trigger the intervention
- Longer Programmes: 3 days absence over the Programme period or 3 consecutive days in one absence.
Where a Participant’s attendance is a cause for concern and falls below the Attendance Intervention Triggers one or more of the following actions may be taken by the Programme Tutor or a nominated Representative.
- Exploratory conversation to determine the reasons for absence.
- Setting of attendance targets to encourage good attendance and to address any concerns.
- Request for medical evidence for prolonged or repeated periods of absence due to sickness, illness or injury.
Where repeated unauthorised absences, poor punctuality or unauthorised online attendance occur, the Programme Tutor will escalate the matter for
consideration by the Operations Team. The Operations Team may choose to impose any of the following sanctions.
- Withdrawal from Qualification or Exams.
- Withdrawal from Employability Support such as the Guaranteed Interview Scheme, or Paid Placement Scheme.
- Deferral to a future programme of learning.
- Removal from the programme of learning.
2.4.1 Support for overcoming barriers to participation
18.104.22.168 Hybrid Attendance
Wherever possible, iungo Solutions strives to provide a seamless hybrid learning experience for participants whose barriers prevent them from being able to attend sessions. Formal requests for hybrid attendance must be submitted in writing to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration by the Programme Tutor.
22.214.171.124 Financial Support
Participants facing financial hardship, relating to travel or care for dependants, that is impacting on their attendance may be able to apply for financial support through iungo Solutions or its learning partners. This is programme dependent and participants will be notified of this facility where it is applicable to their programme and circumstances.
Participants must provide the following evidence to access a barrier fund.
- evidence of a genuine need for financial support – e.g. universal credit (UC) claims or debt repayment plan.
- provide an estimate of weekly expenses in advance – this should be based on historical expenditure, public transport estimates, or mileage at £0.45 per mile.
- provide receipts for any agreed expenditure at agreed intervals during the programme of learning.
3.0 Attendance Responsibilities
3.1 Participant Responsibilities
Participants are responsible for:
- attending all sessions including personalised learning support sessions.
- arriving on time for sessions and remaining for the full duration to demonstrate respect for Tutors and fellow participants.
- seeking consent from their Programme Tutors for any planned absence 24 hours before the absence occurs.
- where short-notice absence is unavoidable, to notify the Programme Tutor at earliest possible opportunity and produce supporting evidence.
- notifying the Programme Tutor of a prolonged absence so that interim work can be set to continue learning.
monitoring their own attendance targets in conjunction with the programme tutor.
3.2 Tutor Responsibilities
Tutors commit to:
- raising awareness of the Participant Attendance Policy and Procedures.
- reminding Participants of the importance of regular attendance and punctuality.
- recording attendance on a register within 10 minutes of commencement of a learning session using the definitions set out in Appendix I and applying comments containing relevant contextual information relating to attendance irregularities.
- contacting learners who are absent without authorisation, within 30 mins of commencement for a learning session, to confirm their (late) attendance or reason for absence.
- escalating attendance matters and concerns to the Programme Tutor in a timely manner.
3.2 Programme Tutor Responsibilities
The Programme Tutor is responsible for:
- monitoring and proactively managing absence and punctuality patterns using the guidance set out in Section 2.2 of this Policy.
- authorising absence in accordance with Section 2.4 of this Policy.
- discussing attendance with Participants during tutorials and one-to-ones.
- advising participants on possible support options available to them on their programme of study and in relation to their individual circumstances.
- setting attendance targets for learners with (near) unacceptable attendance records.
- escalating attendance matters and concerns to the Operational Team in a timely manner.
- monitoring register completion by tutors and ensuring all absence-related evidence is collected and stored appropriately.
- Completing weekly Programme Reports and identifying and attendance concerns.
4.0 Promoting Excellent Attendance
All Participants will sign the Attendance Agreement at the start of their Programme agreeing to follow the Attendance procedures.
All iungo Solutions representatives will reinforce the importance of excellent attendance throughout the year.
Representatives will develop strategies to engage Participants in useful activities to enable them to achieve their potential and develop skills for employability and progression; this will be used as a tool to improve attendance.
5.0 Non Completions
An applicant is considered to have withdrawn, in either of the following situations:
- The applicant requests to leave the programme for any reason before the programme starts; or
- The applicant fails to attend their first session, or first three consecutive sessions on programmes lasting more than five sessions, without notifying the tutors in advance of the session(s). This situation may be referred to as “ghosting”.
Applicants who wish to withdraw should contact email@example.com outlining their reasons for withdrawing. Applicants who withdraw from their programmes will be formally notified of their withdrawal by email and will be removed from the register.
If the applicant reapplies for the programme, or applies for another programme at a later date, they may be put on a waiting list to give new applicants priority. Exceptions may be made if extenuating circumstances apply.
5.2 Drop Outs
A Participant is considered to have dropped out of the programme in either of the following situations:
- The participant requests to leave the programme once the programme has commenced and on or after they attended their first session; or
- The participant fails to attend five or more consecutive sessions without notifying the tutors of the reason for their absence.
Participants who wish to drop out should contact firstname.lastname@example.org outlining their reasons for dropping out. The Programme Tutor will contact the participant to discuss their situation and reasons for wanting to drop out. Wherever possible, adjustments will be made and additional support will be provided to enable the Participant to continue on the programme.
Participants who drop out of a programme will be formally notified of their non-completion by email.
If the Participant reapplies for the programme, or applies for another programme at a later date, they may be put on a waiting list to give new applicants priority. Exceptions may be made if extenuating circumstances apply.
A Participant may be removed from their programme if any of the following situations arise:
- The Participant fails to achieve the required level of attendance and does not improve following a series of three warnings and/or opportunities for improvement provided by the tutor and the wider operations team.
- The Participant fails to meet the deadline for an assessed submission or fails to attend an examination, without providing their reasons in advance.
- The Participant engages in any form of misconduct which may pose a significant or serious threat to fellow participants, tutors or other individuals.
- The Participant engages in any form of plagiarism or other malpractice that generates an unfair advantage.
Participants who are removed from a programme will be formally notified of their non-completion by email, and if appropriate, given the right to appeal.
If the Participant reapplies for the programme, or applies for another programme at a later date, they may be put on a waiting list to give new applicants priority. If the reason for their removal was sufficiently serious, they may be prohibited from applying for a programme for a fixed or indefinite period of time. The participant will be informed of any sanctions or prohibitions applied.
A Deferral is a Participant who successfully requests to defer their entry onto a programme to a future cohort. A Participant may request to be deferred in the following situations:
- They have not yet commenced on their programme and wish to defer to a later date.
- They have already commenced on their programme and now wish to pause their learning and defer to a later date.
It is iungo’s Policy not to allow deferrals as a general rule. A Participant who defers, especially at short notice, inadvertently prevents another Participant from securing their place on the programme. Multiple deferrals create a disadvantage for new learners and pose risks to cohort viability.
Deferrals will be considered if extenuating circumstances apply. Learners wishing to defer should email email@example.com outlining their reasons for wanting to defer, along with any relevant evidence and a proposed deferral plan.
A Switcher is a Participant who requests to change from one programme to another in either of the following situations:
- The participant has not yet commenced on their original programme of study and wishes to switch to another programme; or
- The Participant has already commenced on their programme of study but wishes to switch to another programme.
Requests from an applicant or participant to switch programmes will be carefully considered by the Programme Tutor. Requests to switch may be granted if the following conditions are met:
- The new programme is as well aligned or better, to the participant’s knowledge, skills and ambitions;
- Ether learning has not commenced on both programmes, or the extent of learning on the new programme can be recovered by the Participant in a reasonable time frame proportionate to the length of the programme;
- The new programme has availability of spaces to accommodate the switcher;
- Leaving the existing programme will not negatively impact the existing programme, participants or applicants for that programme.
Wherever possible, the Participant should discuss their options to switch programmes with their Programme Tutor. Formal requests to switch programmes should be made out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following table outlines the key that Tutors use to record Participant Attendance.
|P||Present||Present||Attendance of session|
|V||Present||Virtually Present||Attending the session online by prior agreement|
|A||Authorised Absence||Not attended through either methods||Agreed with the programme tutor|
|U||Unauthorised Absence||Not attended through either methods||No explanation of absence and not attended online|
|N||Not Expected||Not attended through either methods|
|L-||Left Early||Present||Early finish|
|VL+||Virtual late||Present||Virtually late start|
|VL-||Virtual Left Early||Present||Virtual early finish|
Review and Sign-off
This Policy is subject to 12-month review. The next review is due on 01 July 2024.
|Name:||Jessica Leigh Jones MBE|
|Position:||Chief Executive Officer|
|Signature:||J. L. Jones|
|Date:||01 July 2023|