Regular school attendance is essential for a student to make the most of his or her education—to benefit from teacher-led and school activities, to build each day’s learning on the previous day’s, and to grow as an individual.
Absences from class may result in serious disruption of a student’s mastery of the instructional materials; therefore, the student and parent should make every effort to avoid unnecessary absences.
Compulsory Attendance—State law requires that a student between the ages of six and 18 attend school, as well as any applicable accelerated instruction program, extended year program, or tutorial session, unless the student is otherwise excused from attendance or legally exempt. Students enrolled in prekindergarten or kindergarten are required to attend school. A student who voluntarily attends or enrolls after his or her 18th birthday is required to attend each school day until the end of the school year. If a student 18 or older has more than five unexcused absences in a semester, the district may revoke the student’s enrollment. The student’s presence on school property thereafter would be unauthorized and may be considered trespassing.
State law requires attendance in an accelerated reading instruction program when kindergarten, first grade, or second grade students are assigned to such a program. Parents will be notified in writing if their child is assigned to an accelerated reading instruction program as a result of a diagnostic reading instrument.
A student in grades 3-8 will be required to attend any assigned accelerated instruction program, which may occur before or after school or during the summer, if the student does not meet the passing standards on the state assessment for his or her grade level and applicable subject area.
While we realize that absenteeism is usually unavoidable, we want to remind parents that when their child is not in school they miss valuable instruction provided by the teacher. Parents must call and let the school know why their child will be absent.
Parents should please make arrangements to pick up their child’s missed assignments when they are not in school. 7
Upon returning to school after an absence, the student must bring a note within the first three (3) instructional days. Parents should please include in their note: the date of the absence, the reason for the absence, and the parent’s signature. Orange Grove I.S.D. campuses will accept parent notes to excuse up to no more than seven absences per year. After 7 parent notes per year, a doctor’s note will be required or the absence will be deemed unexcused. Extenuating circumstances may be determined by the principal.
Students who either begin their day at school or end their day at school but miss part of the day for medical/dental appointments and who return to school with a doctor’s excuse will not be counted absent for that day.
Students currently enrolled in the 11th and 12th grades will be allowed two college days per year. The student will not be counted absent on these college days, however, documentation from the college or university must be returned to the attendance clerk within three instructional days.
The state mandates that students be in attendance 90% of the required school days. Students who do not meet this attendance requisite may be retained in the same grade. The Compulsory Attendance Laws mandate student attendance at school at a 90% rate. A physician’s documentation regarding the illness of a student will be taken under consideration by the attendance committee. A student who does not meet attendance requirements may not be promoted to the next grade. Attendance will be closely monitored by school officials. It is probable that charges will be filed against parents of students with excessive unexcused absences.
Enrollment in the pre-kindergarten program can be placed in jeopardy due to nonattendance or poor attendance. After a pre-kindergarten student has missed 10% of the number of days school has been in session, that student may be withdrawn from the program.
Nonattendance may also result in assessment of penalties in a court of law against possibly both the student and his/her parents. School employees must investigate and report violations of the state compulsory attendance law. A student absent without permission from school; from any class; from required special programs, such as additional special instruction, termed “accelerated instruction”: by the state; or from required tutorials will be considered in violation of the compulsory attendance law and subject to disciplinary action.
A court of law may also impose penalties against both the student and his or her parents if a school-aged student is deliberately not attending school. A complaint against the student and his or her parents may be filed in court if the student is deliberately not attending school. A complaint against the student/parent may be filed in court if the student:
1. Is absent from school on ten or more days or parts of days within a six-month period in the same school year, or
2. Is absent on three or more days or parts of days within a four-week period.
For a student younger than 12 years of age, the student’s parent could be charged with a criminal offense based on the student’s failure to attend school.
If a student age 12 through age 17 violates the compulsory attendance law, both the parent and student could be charged with a criminal offense.