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545.1 Guideline: Attendance and Truancy

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545.1 Guideline: Attendance and Truancy


Absences and tardiness interfere with the student’s ability to learn because regular attendance is so important to student success, the District has established expectations regarding attendance for all students. The District has also identified interventions aimed to help and support students to meet attendance expectations and improve academic achievement.


A. Because daily attendance is critical to academic achievement, the District expects every student to attend school and be to class on time every day.  Ninety-five (95) percent attendances is set as the minimum standard.

B. Each school will establish tardy rules that emphasize positivity and are consistent with the District’s attendance policy. Ninety-five (95) percent on time is set as the minimum standard. Suspension or removal from instruction must not be used as a consequence for tardiness.


Students who have an Individual Education Program (IEP) or Section 504 Plan may have modified attendance expectations, incentives, recognitions and interventions.   Such modifications must be part of the written plan or program in order to supersede the general attendance expectations for students of a similar age and grade.


Excused Absences include:

Medical or Mental Health Needs. An absence due to illness or a medical or mental health need may be excused by the following means:

  • written verification from a health care professional; 
  • verification from the school nurse; or
  • a note from the student’s parent or guardian, or the student (if eighteen or more years of age and the parent or guardian gives permission), however if the length of the illness is greater than three days, or if the student has accumulated more than eight days of absence during the school year, the parent should contact the school nurse, or provide a health care professional’s written verification.

Religious and cultural observances

Funeral attendance for up to four (4) days; however the principal or site administrator, or designee, may grant a longer period in writing. 

Family emergency for up to three (3) days in an academic year, however upon application by a family in extraordinary circumstances a principal or site administrator, or designee, may grant a longer period in writing. 

Approved family activity for up to ten (10) days within one school year, when

  • The parent or guardian requests permission for the absence ten (10) regularly scheduled school days in advance of the first absence; and
  • The absences are approved in writing by the principal or site administrator in advance of the first absence, and
  • Missed schoolwork is assigned by the student’s teacher or teachers, and the parent or guardian agrees that schoolwork will be completed; and
  • Where the student has shown adequate progress and attendance prior to the request.

Extreme weather conditions considered by the parent to be too dangerous for the student to attend school.

Student appointments with health care providers or other professionals when unable to schedule outside school hours and when the appointment is confirmed in writing by the health care provider or other professional.

Student appearances in a judicial or quasi-judicial meeting ordered by a court when unable to schedule outside school hours and when school is notified in advance by the parent or guardian, the court or the adult student.

College visits, up to two (2) days when the request is made in writing prior to the first absence.


A. Teachers will provide an opportunity for students to make up work, provide an alternative assignment, or excuse missed assignment due to absences.

B. Once the teacher has provided a clear opportunity for students to make up missed assignments, the student will take responsibility to complete the assignments within the time allowed.

C. School handbooks will publish the process for making up assignments to families so they may assist their student.

D. It is possible that failure to complete the assignments may affect a secondary student’s grade and assessment of progress toward achievement of graduation standards.  


Schools will intervene with the student and the family to improve attendance.  Interventions will include but are not limited to:

A. Schools will periodically recognize good attendance, provide good attendance tips to parents and families, and take other positive steps to encourage good attendance as deemed advisable by school administrators, school social workers, and other school professionals.

B. After any unexcused absence, the school will notify the parent of the absence;

C. After repeated tardies to school and/or class, staff will discuss the issue with the parent;

D. Principals will send letters of information to families after three (3) cumulative unexcused absences, and referral for additional interventions within the school or available community resources may be initiated.

E. School staff will notify the proper authorities in the county when a student has three (3) additional unexcused absences that occur after the date of the letter of information.

F. Principals must comply with the procedures for reporting educational neglect and truancy to the proper authorities in the county after six (6) cumulative unexcused absences in a school year.


A. Students who wish to participate in extra-curricular activities after school must be in attendance for at least half of the day (4 of the 7 class periods) and have a proper parent excuse for the missed class periods.  School-sponsored activities are exempt from this rule.  

B. The Activities Director has authority to make exceptions to the 4 class period rule if parent request is received by the Activities Director in advance.

C. A student will maintain adequate progress towards graduation to participate I extracurricular activities.