Student Attendance

Student Attendance Policy

Regular attendance is a significant student responsibility at all grade levels. Many studies correlate regular attendance with success in school. Regular attendance means that the academic learning process is not interrupted, less time is spent on make-up assignments, and students benefit from participation and interaction with others in class. Many important lessons are learned through active participation in classroom and other school activities that cannot be replaced by individual study.

Establishing a pattern of good attendance will benefit the student in school and in the workplace. Attendance is important in the development of a high quality work ethic, which will be a significant factor in a student’s success with future employers. One of the most important work habits that employers look for in hiring and promoting a person is his/her dependability in coming to work every day on time. This is a habit the School wants to help students develop as early as possible. 

Board Policy 5200 - Attendance

The educational program offered by this District is predicated upon the presence of the student and requires continuity of instruction and classroom participation. Attendance shall be required of all students enrolled in the schools during the days and hours that the school is in session or during the attendance sessions to which s/he has been assigned.

A student in grades 9 through 12 may be considered a full-time equivalent student provided the student is enrolled in at least five (5) units of instruction, as defined by State law, per school year.

In accordance with statute, the Superintendent shall require, from the parent of each student of compulsory school age or from an adult student who has been absent from school or from class for any reason, a written statement of the cause for such absence. The Board of Education reserves the right to verify such statements and to investigate the cause of each single absence or prolonged absence.

Repeated infractions of Board policy on attendance may result in suspension or expulsion.

The Board considers the following factors to be reasonable excuses for time missed at school:

A. personal illness (a written physician’s statement verifying the illness may be required)
B. illness in the family necessitating the presence of the child
C. quarantine of the home
D. death in the family
E. necessary work at home due to absence or incapacity of parent(s)/guardian(s)
F. observation or celebration of a bona fide religious holiday
G. out-of-state travel (up to a maximum of four (4) days per school year) to participate in a District-approved enrichment or extracurricular activity. Any classroom assignment missed due to the absence shall be completed by the student.
H. such good cause as may be acceptable to the Superintendent
I. medically necessary leave for a pregnant student in accordance with Policy 5751 (refer to WHCSD website Board Bylaws & Policies)
J. service as a precinct officer at a primary, special or general election in accordance with the program set forth in Policy 5725 (refer to WHCSD website Board Bylaws & Policies)

Attendance need not always be within the school facilities, but a student will be considered to be in attendance if present at any place where school is in session by authority of the Board.

The Board shall consider each student assigned to a program of other guided learning experiences to be in regular attendance for the program provided that s/he reports to such staff member s/he is assigned for guidance at the place in which s/he is conducting study, and regularly demonstrates progress toward the objectives of the course of study.

The Superintendent may excuse a student over fourteen (14) years of age from attendance at school for a future limited period for the purpose of performing essential work directly or exclusively for his/her parents or guardians. Such excuse should not exceed five (5) days and may at the discretion of the

Superintendent be renewed for five (5) additional days. At no time, however, shall such excuse cause a student to be absent from school for a period of more than ten (10) consecutive days.

At the discretion of the Superintendent or his/her designee, a student may be excused for a longer period of time than ten (10) days if a child's parent or guardian has recently died or become totally or partially incapacitated and there is no older brother or sister living in the home who is out of school. (The Superintendent may request a certificate of a physician attesting to the physical condition of the parent or guardian.)

A student will be considered habitually truant if the student is absent without a legitimate excuse for five (5) or more consecutive school days, for seven (7) or more school days in one (1) month, or twelve (12) or more school days in one (1) school year.

A student will be considered chronically truant if the student is absent without a legitimate excuse for seven (7) or more consecutive school days, for ten (10) or more school days in one (1) month, or for fifteen (15) or more school days in one (1) year.
Legitimate excuses for the absence of a student who is otherwise habitually or chronically truant include but are not limited to:

A. the student was enrolled in another school district;
B. the student was excused from attendance in accordance with R.C 3321.04; or
C. the student has received an age and schooling certificate.
 
If a student is habitually truant and the student’s parent has failed to cause the student’s attendance, the Board authorizes the Superintendent to file a complaint with the Judge of the Juvenile Court and/or to take any other appropriate intervention actions as set forth in this Board’s policy.

If a student is chronically truant and the student’s parent has failed to cause the student’s attendance, the Board authorizes the Superintendent to file a complaint with the Judge of the Juvenile Court.

In order to address the attendance practices of a student who is habitually truant, the Board authorizes the Superintendent to take any of the following intervention actions:

A. assign the student to a truancy intervention program
B. provide counseling to the student
C. request or require the student’s parent to attend a parental involvement program
D. request or require a parent to attend a truancy prevention mediation program
E. notify the Registrar of Motor Vehicles of the student’s absences
F. take appropriate legal action
G. assignment to an alternative school (Note: If the District has established an alternative school, it must appear as an alternative intervention strategy.)
 
The Superintendent is authorized to establish an educational program for parents of truant students which is designed to encourage parents to ensure that their children attend school regularly. Any parent who does not complete the program is to be reported to law enforcement authorities for parental education neglect, a fourth class misdemeanor if found guilty.

The Superintendent shall develop administrative guidelines that:

A. establish proper procedures so the student and his/her parents are provided the opportunity to challenge the attendance record prior to notification and that such notification complies with R.C. 3321.13 (B)(2);
B. establish a school session which is in conformity with the requirements of the rules of the State Board;
C. govern the keeping of attendance records in accordance with the rules of the State Board;
D. identify the habitual truant, investigate the cause(s) of his/her behavior, and consider modification of his/her educational program to meet particular needs and interests;
E. provide students whose absence has been excused an opportunity to make up work they missed and receive credit for the work, if completed;
F. refer for evaluation any student who, due to a specifically identifiable physical or mental impairment, exceeds or may exceed the District's limit on excused absence to determine eligibility either under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, or other appropriate accommodation.

Whenever any student of compulsory school age has ten (10) consecutive days or a total of fifteen (15) days of unexcused absence from school during any semester, s/he will be considered habitually absent. The Board authorizes the Superintendent to inform the student and his/her parents, guardian, or custodian of the record of excessive absence as well as the District's intent to notify the Registrar of Motor Vehicles, if appropriate, and the Judge of the Juvenile Court of the student's excessive absence.

R.C. 3313.664, 3317.034, 3321.01 et seq., 3321.13(B)(2), 3321.19, 3321.191
R.C. 3321.22, 3321.38, 3323.041, 3331.05
A.C. 3301-35-03(G), 3301-47-01, 3301-69-02
Revised 5/12/16
© NEOLA 2016

Truancy & House Bill 410

Unexcused absence from school (truancy) is not acceptable. Students who are truant will receive no credit for school work that is missed. In accordance with HB410 of the Ohio Revised Code, effective April 6, 2017, a student will be considered habitually truant if the student is absent 30 consecutive hours without a legitimate excuse (formerly 5 days); 42 hours in one month without a legitimate excuse (formerly 7 days); 72 hours in one school year without a legitimate excuse (formerly 12 days).

Excessive absence is when a student is absent 38 hours in one month regardless of excuse and 65 hours in one school year regardless of excuse.
A student will be considered chronic absent when the absence exceeds 10% of the school year for any reason.

If a student is habitually or chronically truant and the student’s parent fails to cause the student’s attendance, a complaint will be filed with the Judge of the Juvenile Court in compliance with State law and Board Policy 5200. Habitual or chronic truancy can also result in:
A. Assign the student to a truancy intervention program
B. Provide counseling to the student
C. Request or require the student’s parent to attend a parental involvement program
D. Request or require a parent to attend a truancy prevention mediation program
E. Notify the Registrar of Motor Vehicles of the student’s absences
F. Take appropriate legal action
 

Excused Absences

Students may be excused from school for one or more of the following reasons and will be provided an opportunity to make-up missed school work and/or tests:

The Board considers the following factors to be reasonable excuses for time missed at school:

1. Personal illness (a written physician’s statement verifying the illness may be required)
2. Illness in the family necessitating the presence of the child
3. Quarantine of the home
4. Death in the family
5. Necessary work at home due to absence or incapacity of parent(s)/guardian(s)
6. Observation or celebration of a bona fide religious holiday
7. Out-of-state travel (up to a maximum of four (4) days per school year) to participate in a District-approved enrichment or extracurricular activity
Any classroom assignment missed due to the absence shall be completed by the student.
8. Such good cause as may be acceptable to the Superintendent
9. Medically necessary leave for a pregnant student in accordance with Policy 5751
10. Service as a precinct officer at a primary, special or general election in accordance with the program set forth in Policy 5725

Notification of Absence

If a student will be absent, the parents must notify the School and provide an explanation. If prior contact is not possible, the parents should provide a written excuse as soon as possible after the student’s absence. When no excuse is provided, the absence will be unexcused and the student will be identified as truant for that school day. If the offered excuse for a student’s absence is questionable or if the number of student absences is excessive, the school staff will notify the parents of the need for improvement in the student’s attendance.

A skipped class or part of the school day will be identified as an unexcused absence and students will not be permitted to make-up missed class work. The student will also be subject to disciplinary action.

Students with a health condition that causes repeated absences must provide the administration with an explanation of the condition from a registered physician.
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