Attendance - Essential for Student Success
Students are responsible for establishing good attendance habits. For every missed day of school, it takes a student 2 days to catch up since he/she must make up missed learning and catch up with new learning at the same time. Absenteeism also creates extra work for teachers as they have to re-teach lessons and prepare makeup materials for absent students. This uses valuable teaching time and deprives all students of learning opportunities. Absences must be verified by a parent or guardian within 48 hours.
Students in grades 7-12 shall lose credit for any class in which they exceed;
- five (5) total LCA absences in a trimester class;
- eight (8) LCA absences in a semester class,
- or 2 LCA days per session at Emerson Alternative High School
The total number of absences that can be made up during Attendance Make-Up Sessions (AMS) in any given class during a trimester/semester has been set at 5 (five). At Emerson Alternative High School the total number of days that can be made up per session is three (3). Only excused absences verified by a parent/legal guardian may be excluded from the total absence limitation through AMS attendance.
LCA Exempt Absence:
- Death in Family Absence (DIF): An absence due to a death in the family or close friends.
- Medical Absence (MED): An excused absence, due to illness or medical/dental appointment, verified by a licensed medical practitioner cleared with the attendance office before, the day of, or no later than the close of the second day upon the student’s return to school. Medical Absence Verification.
- School Activity Absence (ACT): An absence due to participation in district sponsored field trips, extra-curricular, or co-curricular activities. Activity absences for non-district sponsored extra-curricular activities may be granted upon approval of the superintendent/designee.
Loss of Credit (LCA) Absence:
Any absence not specifically designated as exempt from inclusion in the total absence limitation. The following are absences that count towards Loss of Credit.
- Excused Absences (VER): An excused absence is one which has been verified by the parent/legal guardian; an absence that the parent/legal guardian knew of, approved, and cleared with the attendance office before, the day of, or no later than the close of the second day upon the student’s return to school.
- Absence due to Illness (ILL): An excused absence, verified by a parent/legal guardian, as due to illness and cleared with the attendance office no later than the close of the second day upon the student’s return to school.
- Late Excused/Verified Absence (LTV): An excused absence verified later than the second day of the student’s return to school. All Late Excused/Verified absences shall be included in the total absence limitation and may not be excluded through Attendance Make-up Sessions.
- Unexcused Absence (UNV): An unexcused absence is one which is unverified by the parent/legal guardian; an absence in which the parent/legal guardian did not have knowledge of, or did not approve, or did not clear with attendance office before, the day of, or no later than the close of the second day upon the student’s return to school. All Unexcused absences shall be included in the total absence limitation and may not be excluded through Attendance Make-up Sessions.
- Truancy (UNX): A student is considered truant when if they are absent:
- Without the knowledge and consent of a parent/legal guardian.
- Leave school without signing out at the attendance office.
- Is absent from class without permission.
- Obtains a pass to go to certain place and does not report there.
- Comes to school but does not attend class.
All truancies shall be included in the total absence limitation and may not be excluded through Attendance Make-up Sessions.
Medical Absence Verification Procedures:
- Acute Illness/Medical Appointments: Direct verification from the service provider to the school via U.S. Mail, e-mail, fax, or sealed envelope is required. A verification form will be available for students to pick up at the attendance office for service provider use.
- Chronic Illness: Direct verification from the service provider to school stating the necessary length of the absence or anticipated absence frequency. A verification letter must be provided at the onset of the illness or annually as appropriate. A release of information may be requested where the service provider letter lacks clarity or the frequency and/or nature of absences is inconsistent with the service provider documentation.
- Injury/Surgical Procedures: Medical verification for absences due to injury/surgical procedures shall follow the procedures specified for illness, depending on the nature of the injury.
Loss of Credit Appeal:
Those students, who have valid reasons to believe that all or part of their LCA absences are the result of extraordinary circumstances, may request a review of their case following the attendance appeal process.
Each secondary school shall establish an LCA Appeal Committee consisting of three (3) to five (5) counselors and administrators. A parent/guardian/student may appeal assignment of an LCA grade to the school LCA Appeal Committee. All appeals must be submitted in writing to the attendance office not later than the 15th day of the next term. The LCA Appeal Committee is authorized to take the following actions:
- Deny the appeal
- Grant credit
- Grant credit contingent on completion of attendance make-up
- Grant credit contingent on successful completion of an attendance contract. Attendance contracts shall be limited to one in grades 7-9 and one in grades 10-12.
Appeal decisions shall be communicated by letter with a copy placed in the student’s cumulative file.