School absentee rates surging thanks to triple-threat of illnesses

Prizes for students who have 100 per cent attendance are a contentious subject - depending on who you ask, many parents will have different feelings on whether kids should receive an award for not missing a day of school.

While good attendance at school is praised since students are getting all their lessons, understandably children sometimes can't make it to class due to illness which many think is wrong to penalise them for.

Now this debate has been reignited once more on Reddit after someone questioned whether it is right for attendance-based awards to still be a thing - especially given the Covid pandemic we've all gone through.

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In the post on the "Ask UK" forum, a parent wrote a post titled: "Do you agree that 100 per cent attendance prizes in schools should be done away with?"

"My son's school just sent out an email saying kids with 100 per cent attendance this term will be in for winning a prize, they also send out weekly certificates for attendance through the parent app," the parent wrote.


People have been debating whether school prizes for good attendance should still be a thingiStockphoto by Getty Images

"Surely Covid has shown us to stay home when you’re sick, I don’t have 100 per cent attendance at work but am considered a valuable employee, why are we still pushing this attendance above all things idea?"

After nearly 4,000 upvotes, there were plenty of comments from people who weighed in with their opinion on the age-old debate.

One person wrote: "Agreed. I'm tired of this culture of 'you must come in to work/school, even if you feel like death'.

"You aren't getting the best out of the experience, giving your best and just risk making others sick, and prolonging your recovery.

They added: "Especially now in a time of remote working and learning, where they can still do stuff and not risk anyone else's health."

"Yes. I get the idea but I don't really think kids should be rewarded for something they can't control. You can't help being ill and some kids naturally have a better immune system than others," another person said.

Someone else added: "It's a slight shame for kids who can't achieve 100 per cent for whatever reason, but it's a bloody token prize for literally just showing up, and if their parents let this be a big deal they're only setting them up for being not being able to cope with every other minor injustice that life throws at you."

"It also encourages people who are sick to go anyways, resulting in other people getting sick," a fourth person commented.

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