ATTENDANCE POLICY/ABSENCE PROCEDURES [Board Policy 501.2 (8) – (15)]
Attendance at school on a regular basis is an extremely important ingredient for student success. Students perform better in school when they are in attendance regularly. Regular attendance and a sense of responsibilities are important to every job.
It is the position at MHS that students should be in attendance at school every day that school is in session and should attend and participate in all scheduled classes. Every effort should be exercised on the part of the students and parents to assure regular attendance.
The emphasis of the attendance program at MHS is to place accountability or ownership on the individual student. Each class offered at MHS will have student participation figured into the final grade. (80% Academic Mastery / 20% Class Participation)
These guidelines will be followed:
- School Attendance – Students and Parents are accountable for all absences from class and notification must be received by the attendance office within 48 hours of the absence. Parents may account for the absence of their child by:
- A telephone call to the school explaining the absence of the child (563-263-6616 open 24 hours seven days a week).You may also email our attendance office at email@example.com.
- Written notification presented to the attendance office.
- School Activities – Students missing class because of participation in a school activity should make arrangements for make-up with each instructor prior to the date of absence. Failure to complete assignments will result in a failing grade for the assigned work.
- School/Personal Business – Students are not to use class time to take care of school business affairs or personal business. School offices are open for business before school and throughout the day. Students should take care of business before school, during lunch, or after school. Use of class time will be considered as a period missed.
- Suspension/Exclusion Caused by Student’s Inappropriate Behavior – When a student makes a decision to act inappropriately and the behavior results in an out of school suspension, the days out of school will not count as days of non-attendance. However, the student must make up all work missed during the suspension within the time frame outlined in the Board policy and student agenda in order to receive credit for the time out of class.
- Administrative Office/School Clearance- When a student is called to the Attendance Office or one of the administrative offices at the request of an administrator or counselor, the student will be excused from class. The student may return to class with an admit from the office.
- Administrative/Nurse/Counselor/School Emergencies – Students having personal or medical problems at school should first report to the assigned class instructor and then to the school nurse, administration, or guidance office. Leaving the building or being out of class without authorization will be recorded as an unexcused absence.
- Attendance Notification – Students are considered unexcused if they are not present in class and prior notification has not been given by a parent to the Attendance Office.
- Whenever a student is absent unexcused for at least one period, the school will attempt to contact the parents through the schools automated calling system if the parents have not contacted the school. Notes are acceptable to account for an absence if parents cannot make contact by telephone.
- A phone call will be generated each day a class period is unexcused, or that the student is more than 5 minutes late.
- A log will be maintained to verify attempts and possible results. At two unexcused absences, verbal and written notification to students will be given by the classroom teacher. The student will be required to bring the notification back to the teacher with student and parent/guardian signature confirming notification of the absences.
- Only when a student of majority age (18 years or older, married, or with approval of self-guardianship papers) is not residing with the student’s parents or guardian and not under parental insurance or tax credits, may the student present his or her own reason for absence without parental verification. The principal or designee should be notified in advance of any such circumstances.
- In the event that the principal or designee determines that it is advisable to verify a reason given for an absence, the principal or designee may take appropriate steps to do so. When it is determined that an excuse is forged or misrepresents the facts, the principal or designee may take disciplinary action. All absences will be recorded as an unexcused absence.
- Unexcused Tardiness
- Students are unexcused tardy when he/she is not in their classroom or assigned location, as per student handbook, when the bell rings.
- For every unexcused tardy, there will be an assigned a 20 minute detention.
- Students reporting late to a class must have a written pass from the school employee responsible.
- Students more than 5 minutes tardy to class should report directly to class. Skipping the class constitutes violation of school rules and will be dealt with by the grade level administrator.
- Students returning from a medical, legal, bereavement leave, school activity or family emergency will be immediately returned to class.
- The following absences will be considered approved. Approved absences do not count toward violation of attendance policy.
- Death or serious illness in the immediate family or household, and emergency work at home when vital to the family welfare (up to 5 days) as listed in MCSD contract.
- The funeral of a relative or close friend (1day).
- Medical or dental appointments which cannot be made other than during school time, and for which written verification of the appointment is presented.
- Student illness must be excused by a medical doctor or parent or guardian.
- Court appearances – when subpoenaed.
- Post-secondary visits to investigate enrollment will be approved for 11th and 12th grade students. Up to 3 days per year may be granted by an administrator.
- Approved school activity.
- School work missed due to any absence must be completed to the satisfaction of each teacher whose class or classes were missed. It is the student’s responsibility to arrange for this make-up work, and these arrangements must be made in a way that does not interfere with normal classroom activities.
- When students can anticipate absences, every effort must be made to see that school work is made up in advance of the absence, or arrangements made to the satisfaction of the teacher(s) involved. Completion of school work in advance is a prerequisite to allowing the absence to be approved.
- Students will lose all credit for homework, tests or quizzes assigned/due during unexcused absences or class cuts.
- All school work missed due to excused absences must be made up within twice the number of school days missed to the satisfaction of the individual teacher(s) involved.
- Students shall receive full credit for school work made up if it is to the satisfaction of the individual teacher(s) involved.
- All make-up work will have to be completed within two weeks following the end of any given grading period (second semester excluded). At the end of the two week period, if all make-up work has not been completed, the “I” (Incomplete) mark will revert to the grade earned. Under special circumstances, the principal or designee may lengthen this time period.
- Students who are absent for physical disabilities, illness or emotional disability problems may request credit to be granted through a tutorial program that uses certified personnel. Persons who are projected to be out of school because of illness for more than ten consecutive school days should contact their school counselor about the possibility of tutorial services.
- No later than four weeks following the close of each school semester the principal will report to the superintendent, regarding the average daily attendance problems for the previous semester.
- Students who are found to be absent without an accepted excuse may be subjected to one or more of the following disciplinary actions:
- In-school suspension
- Out of school suspension
- Removal from school activities
- Suspension from school determined by district policy
- Alternative education setting
- Recommendation may be made by administration to the Board of Directors that the student be expelled
The absence policy is based on the fact that something important happens in class every day and that the activity or interaction with the teacher and students can never be exactly duplicated.
In order for the staff to do the best possible job of educating the students entrusted to them, the student must be in regular attendance. Thus attendance will be recorded for each class on a daily basis. A successful educational program requires the cooperation of the parent, the student, and the school staff at all points in the process. One of the most vital points is that of student attendance. We cannot teach a student who is not present.
- Daily Absence
- Students are responsible for all work missed due to school absences and will contact instructors, or fellow students, to make arrangements for make-up upon return to school. Students must make arrangements with their instructors within two days of returning to school if they expect to receive credit for the late homework assignments. Homework requests for students missing more than three consecutive days may be made through the guidance office. Work missed due to class truancy will be recorded as zero or F, depending on individual teacher’s grading scale. The attendance center will call each day that at least a period/class is missed, including tardies registered as cuts. There will be a record of such calls made available if so requested.
- Unexcused Absences
- At 2 unexcused absences, verbal and written notification to students will be given by the classroom teacher and/or designated high school staff. The Student will be required to bring the notification back to the teacher with student and parent/guardian signature confirming notification of the absences.
- Written and telephone contact will be made to a parent or guardian on 4 unexcused absences in the class.
- An attendance drop notification will take place upon a student’s 6th day of unexcused absence in a class and will result in the student being dropped from the class with “no credit”.
- A home contact must be made before a student is dropped from a class.
- Student Appeal(Due Process) for Credit Procedure:
- The administration will send a formal written notice informing the parent/guardian of the drop status.
- Administration will have copies of the appeal form available for students (located in the Assistant Principal’s office).
- Students have five school days from the time they receive the verbal notice of exceeding the policy to submit a written request for appeal to the building administration.
- Students will have the opportunity to explain and validate their attendance record on the remainder of the form, which then must be signed by the student and a parent/guardian.
- The student will return the form to the High School principal’s office prior to, or on the due date for principal’s consideration.
- When the appeal form has been appropriately completed, the High School Principal will review it, make a decision, and notify the student within a reasonable time frame.
- The principal or designee will review all student appeal decisions.
- If the appeal is accepted the student will be reinstated to the class.
- Extended Absences Due to Medical Problems or Hospitalization
- Students who are absent for physical disabilities, illness, or emotional disability problems may request credit to be granted through a tutorial program that uses certified personnel. Students who are projected to be out of school for more than ten (10) consecutive school days, and upon physician’s request, should contact the school counselor about the possibility of tutorial services.
- Additional Guidelines:
- An absence count will start only upon a student’s first registered day in a class.