STUDENT ABSENCES AND EXCUSES
(Elementary and Secondary Attendance Policy)
All students are expected to attend school regularly and to be on time for classes in order to benefit maximally from the instructional program. This will also aid in the development of habits of punctuality, self-discipline and responsibility.
Parents/guardians have a duty to ensure regular attendance by their student(s) when enrolled in school. The building principal will monitor the attendance of students under his/her supervision. Procedures of communication will be implemented to ensure that parents are part of the process/solution. Excessive absences may result in failure and, possibly retention at the elementary and middle school.
Parent participation is a critical element in encouraging good student attendance. Parents are encouraged to call school prior to the start of the school day when their child is absent. If verification of an absence is not received, school personnel will attempt to contact the parent to verify the absence. If verification is not received within 48 hours the absence will be considered truancy. When contact is established, the parent should be reminded of the required verification procedures.
Since parental involvement is an integral part of this process, notification will be provided when students are absent too frequently. The building principal may use discretion in sending written notification to parents of students experiencing unavoidable absences resulting from uncontrollable circumstances.
After fifteen absences, the lack of attendance may be considered excessive. When this occurs procedures to contact the Missouri Division of Family Services should be followed. Efforts should be made to communicate with parents and provide resources prior to referrals to the Division of Family Services, except in extreme circumstances.
Parents of students who are absent too frequently will be reminded by letter as follows:
Notification of Absences
Level 1 10 Accumulated Absences Attendance letter (JED-E-1), sent by principal
Level 2 Additional Absences Crisis Counselor contact with students and Crisis Counselor/administrator contact with parent
Level 3 In excess of 15 Absences Attendance letter, JED-E-2, sent by principal (Certified Mail)
Level 4 Additional Absences Referral to Division of Family Services
Level 5 Additional absences Family Court’s letter (certified mail)
Level 6 Additional Absence Referral to District Office for petition of Family Court Program
In cases where a student has missed 20 or more days during a year, an initial letter JED-E-3 will be sent prior to the start of school. In addition, if the attendance pattern from the prior year continues, the principal may choose to bypass the initial steps.