GUIDELINES FOR SCHOOL AND CLASS ATTENDANCE
are expected to be in school, in class, and ready for instruction. Daily and
punctual attendance is essential to each studentís academic success. Absence
from school is detrimental to student achievement. The value of the experiences
and benefits of classroom instruction may not be measured completely by tests
and assignments. Therefore, students who fail to attend school (or given
classes) may be denied credit for their respective class(es)
or grade level.† Chronic absence from
school is defined as missing at least 10 percent of school days in a year for
any reason, excused or unexcused.
††††††††††† As required by law, each parent/guardian is responsible for regular and punctual attendance of any child in his or her charge within the compulsory age for school attendance. Emancipated students are responsible for their own regular and punctual attendance. Parents and emancipated students are expected to work cooperatively with school personnel to correct attendance problems, including meetings with teachers, counselors, or administrators.
††††††††††† Each member of a schoolís faculty is expected to avoid causing a student to be tardy or absent from a colleagueís class. If a student is tardy or absent because of being detained by a faculty member, he/she will be considered excused and the absence will not be included in the count for excessive absences.
††††††††††† Students shall not be in an unauthorized area of a school without prior permission, and shall not leave a classroom, building, or assigned area without proper permission. Students who do not comply with this section will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the Standards of Student Conduct.
A. Absence Defined
A student who is not present for any portion of the school day is counted absent. Excessive tardies or early releases from any class will be compiled and included in the count for excessive absences. Six tardies and/or checkouts will constitute one day of absence.
At the high school, absences are computed for each class
in addition to the daily attendance report.
B. Excused Absences
Personal illness, illness or death in the family, exposure to contagious disease, medical appointments, recognized religious holidays, required court appearances, or school sponsored/related activities shall be considered legitimate excuses for a studentís absence. The parent or legal guardian shall provide written notice within two days to the school of the reason for the absence or tardiness.
C. Unexcused Absence
Absences for reasons other than those listed above.
Absence required due to an administrative decision to suspend a student for violation of the Standards of Student Conduct and in accordance with discipline guidelines.
E. Parent/Guardian Notification of Absences
If the parent/guardian does not acknowledge and assume
responsibility for student attendance and all intervention strategies pursued
by the school are unsuccessful, the principal may refer the student to the
Truancy Officer to consider initial proceedings as specified in the Code of
Virginia. Procedures for compliance with this statute are found in Alleghany
County School Board Policy JED.
F. Recordkeeping for Absences
Each principal is responsible for establishing a recordkeeping system for all student absences which complements the school divisionís system for state reporting purposes.
Excused absences for school sponsored/related activities,
authorized visits of students with school
All absences require written confirmation from the parent/guardian. All absence notes will be preserved until the close of the academic school year. When a signature is in question, the principal will be the judge of its validity.
G. Make-up work
Refer to Alleghany County School Board Policy JGE and Alleghany County School Board Regulation JGE-R.
H. Excessive Absences
All excused and unexcused absences will be included in computing excessive absences except as follows:
∑ School-sponsored/related activities
∑ Authorized visits of students with school personnel
∑ Recognized religious holidays
In the high school, students in split block classes having more than eighteen (18) absences (excused or unexcused) within a given year shall be considered as having excessive absences.
In the high school, students in block classes having nine (9) absences (excused or unexcused) within a given semester shall be considered as having excessive absences.
In the middle school, students in semester classes having nine (9) absences (excused or unexcused) within a given semester shall be considered as having excessive absences.
In the middle school, students in yearlong classes having more than eighteen (18) absences (excused or unexcused) for the year shall be considered as having excessive absences.
In the elementary schools, students having more than eighteen (18) absences (excused or unexcused) for the year shall be considered as having excessive absences.
2. Resulting Actions
a. When a studentís absences equal 10% of the number for excessive absences, the school will notify the parent in writing of the number of absences and will be responsible for working with the student and the parent in developing a plan of corrective action as appropriate. Such intervention may include, but is not limited to:
∑ Parent/guardian conference with school administrator, teacher and/or school counselor;
∑ Referral of student to school counselor;
∑ Referral of student to the truancy officer;
∑ Denial of student privileges, such as participation in extra-curricular activities, pending improvement in studentís attendance;
∑ Referral to the school nurse for possible development of an individualized health plan in collaboration with the studentís physician;
∑ Referral of student to the school based intervention
∑ Referral of student for possible placement in alternative education program.
b. The principal or his designee will advise the parent/guardian of the appropriate following action:
Students having excessive absences will participate in a corrective action plan with strategies to improve attendance. At the end of the year, students who continue to have excessive absences may be considered for grade retention.
In high school and middle school courses, students having
excessive absences will participate in a corrective action plan with strategies
to improve attendance.
3. Waiver of Grade Retention
A parent/guardian may request a waiver of the attendance regulation for extenuating circumstances beyond their control and/or the studentís control. Each school shall have the Alleghany County Public Schoolsí Attendance Waiver Request Form available in the main office and/or guidance office.
A parent/guardian may submit a waiver request to the principal prior to the close of a semester or school year, but no later than ten (10) calendar days after the close of the semester or school year.
Teachers or administrators will provide attendance records and documentation of absences to the principal for review in response to a waiver request. A parent/guardian may provide additional documentation in conjunction with the waiver request.
Each waiver will be considered on an individual basis taking into consideration documentation provided and extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the parent/guardian and/or student. The principal may request additional documentation from a medical professional when absences due to illness are excessive and/or a pattern appears to exist.
The principal shall act upon a waiver request and the
parent/guardian shall be notified of the decision in writing within fifteen
(15) business days after it has been received.
4. Appeal of Waiver Decision
A parent/guardian may appeal the decision of the principal by submitting a written appeal to the superintendentís designee within five (5) days of receipt of the decision from the principal. The superintendentís designee shall act upon a waiver request and the parent/guardian shall be notified of the decision in writing within fifteen (15) business days after it has been received. The decision of the Superintendentís designee is final.
Approved: †††††† June 21, 2010
Amended:††††††† June 20, 2016
Amended:††††††† June 18, 2018
Legal Refs: †††† Va. Code Sections 22.1-254, 22.1-258, and 22.1-262.
Cross Refs: ††† JED Student Absences/Excuses Dismissals
††††††††††††††††††††††† JGE Make-Up Work Following Absences
††††††††††††††††††††††† JGR-R Guidelines for Make-Up Work Following Absences
6/18 ACPS††††††††††††††††† ††††††††† ALLEGHANY COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS