Board Policies


Adoption Date: Oct 18, 2006
Revision Date: Aug 07, 2013
5200AG - STUDENT ATTENDANCE ADMINISTRATIVE GUIDELINES

Regular daily student attendance is an expectation of the Board and the staff of Marion Community Schools.  It is recognized that student attendance is the responsibility of both the parents and students, and that student achievement is dependent on a student’s record of positive school attendance.  Administrators, teachers, and support staff employed by Marion Community Schools have developed many incentives to encourage students to attend school on a regular basis. However, it is recognized that schools cannot be successful working in isolation. Successful interventions must “get at” the root cause of a student’s poor attendance. Therefore, support for improved student attendance will continue to be solicited from the community.  Programs and procedures to enhance student attendance include but are not limited to the following:
 

  1. Parent contact including home visits
  2. Student Study Teams
  3. Classroom incentive programs tied to awards
  4. Grade level weekly awards for best attendance percentages
  5. Recognition of students with perfect attendance
  6. Incentive programs provided by community businesses
  7. Incorporating into instructional lessons the importance of good attendance & classroom participation
  8. Counseling students concerning individual attendance problems
  9. Teaching students that success in the job market is dependent upon establishing good attendance patterns
  10. Involving community agencies and neighborhood support groups in the development of programs to improve student attendance
  11. Work-ethic certification
  12. Developing meaningful, engaging, lesson plans
  13. Earning class credit is naturally related to good attendance.

                                               
A student’s parent/guardian has the responsibility to notify the school each day the student is absent from school.  Parents are expected to contact the school by telephone on the day of the absence.  If this is not possible, written documentation from the parent must be delivered to the school office upon the day of the student’s return. Documentation of absences must be received within twenty-four hours of the absence.  Excused absences are defined as absences that the school corporation regards as legitimate reasons for being out of school, as included in the school policy.  Unexcused absences are absences not covered under the definition of excused or exempt. 
 
The following situations are documented reasons for absence:
                               
 

  1. Illness verified by note from parent/guardian.
  2. Illness verified by note from Physician.
  3. Recovery from an accident
  4. Service as a page or honoree of the Indiana General Assembly, service on a precinct election board or as a helper for a candidate or political party on election day, service with the Indiana National Guard for not more than ten (10) days in a school year, service with the Indiana wing of the civil air patrol for not more than five (5) days in a school year, and for any educationally related non-classroom activity described in Indiana Code Section 20-33-2-17.5. 
  5. Death in the immediate family
  6. Family funeral
  7. Observation or celebration of a bona fide religious holiday
  8. Disasters such as fire, tornado, etc.
  9. Maternity
  10. Military Connected Families (e.g. absences related to deployment and return)
  11. Such other good cause as may be acceptable to the Superintendent or permitted by law.

 
In addition, the Superintendent shall ensure that a process is in place that:           

 
Provides for the reporting to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles those students who have been suspended for the second time during a school year or expelled for misconduct, are habitually truant, or have withdrawn from school;
 
 

  1. Ensures that work permits may be revoked if a student is habitually truant or has excessive absences;
  2. Ensures that students attend a full day of school each day as defined in I.C. 20-l0.1-2-1;
  3. Ensures that parents are notified in writing of their responsibility for their child’s attendance at school as outlined in I.C. 20-8.1-3-33.
  4. Provides for homebound education as specified in 511 IAC 7-27-11 that the parent must provide the school corporation with a statement from a physician with an unlimited license to practice medicine that states one of the following:
    1. the student has an illness or injury which will require homebound care for a minimum of twenty (20) consecutive instructional days or, if the illness or injury occurs less than twenty (20) instructional days prior to the end of the   year and the student needs instruction to meet promotion or graduation requirements, the student will require homebound care through the end of the school year; or,
    2. the student has a chronic illness or other medical condition that will require periodic hospitalization or homebound care for an aggregate of at least twenty (20) instructional days over the period of the school year.
  5. Ensures that reasonable effort is made to contact families on the day of absence (preferably in the a.m.)
  6. Reminds all employees and students that poor grades and or loss of credit are likely outcomes for poor attendance.

               
 
ATTENDANCE GUIDELINES
 
The school office will maintain a record of the number of days a student is absent or tardy from school and the reason for the student being absent or tardy.  
 
Effective July 1, 2013, SEA 338 amends IC 20-20-8-8.  Habitual truancy includes students absent ten (10) days or more from school within a school year without being excused or without being absent under a parental request filed with the school.  Chronic absenteeism includes students absent from school for ten percent (10%) or more of a school year for any reason.)
 
Absences:
 
 

  1. The student’s attendance record shall be monitored and confirmed using reports generated from the office monitoring attendance. The building administrator or designee determines if and when attendance intervention proceedings will be initiated.  Reason and awareness of conditions of attendance shall be considered. School officials should make reasonable effort each day to contact absent students.

 
 

  1. When a student accumulates five (5) days of absences that are either documented or unexcused and the administrator designee determines that proceedings be initiated, said school administrator or designee will send a letter informing the child’s parent of the school’s concern regarding the poor attendance pattern.  A copy of the attendance record shall be included with the letter.  In addition, the school will initiate positive interventions that include, but are not limited to, parent conferences, home visits, student incentives, regular meetings with the home-school coordinator or social worker, a contract with the student addressing attendance and referral to the school’s Student Study Team.

 
 

  1. When a student accumulates eight (8) days of absences that are either documented or unexcused, a second written letter from an administrator or designee to the parent will be sent. A doctor’s slip will be required for every subsequent absence.  The administrator or designee will also request a parent conference at school or an additional Student Study Team meeting will be held. Interventions in place will need to be re-evaluated.

 
 

  1. When ten (10) or more absences have occurred, either documented or unexcused, the building administrator or designee will forward an Attendance Referral Form to the Marion Community Schools’ Attendance Officer.  The

 
 
Attendance Referral Form shall be accompanied by the documentation of previous written communications to said parent or guardian. 
 
 

  1. Educational neglect charges may be initiated by the Grant County Prosecutors Office.

 
 

  1. For students who are sixteen years of age or older, the principal, at his/her discretion, will initiate a due process proceeding to remove the student from school including via expulsion or proper exit interview. (See Policy 5130 and accompanying guideline)               

 
Truancy:
 
 

  1. On the student’s first offense, the principal or designee may address the truancy with a parent conference and letter.

 
                Following the parent contact, the principal may initiate any of the actions listed below:
 

  1. The Student Study Team may be reconvened.
  2. Detention may be assigned.
  3. The student may be placed on social probation.
  4. A letter may be sent to the Judge of Grant Superior Court and to the Division of Families and Children.
  5. Home visit(s) may be made.
  6. The student may be required to make up time missed.
  7. Lunch detentions may be assigned.
  8. Modified work detail may be assigned.
  9. A student’s day may be modified.
  10. The student may be assigned to in-school suspension.

 
Tardies:
Tardiness is defined as follows: Students must be in the classroom before the tardy bell rings.  Students who are not in the classroom will be considered tardy.  Students who arrive late to school must report to the attendance office to obtain an admit pass to class. Even when a parent or guardian calls in, the student is counted as tardy.  For grades 7-12, the count starts over for tardies at the beginning of each semester. For grades K-6, the count does NOT start over.  Rather, it is cumulative for the entire school year.  Truancies are cumulative for all grades for the entire school year.
 
Grades K-6: 
 
 

  1. When a student accumulates five (5) tardies, the administrator or designee determines that proceedings be initiated and said school administrator or designee will send a letter informing the child’s parent of the school’s concern regarding the poor attendance pattern.  A copy of the student’s attendance record shall be included with the letter.  In addition, the school will initiate positive interventions that include, but are not limited to, parent conferences, home visits, student incentives, regular meetings with the home-school coordinator or social worker, a contract with the student addressing attendance and referral to the school’s Student Study Team.

 
 

  1. When a student accumulates eight (8) tardies, a second written letter from an administrator or designee to the parent will be sent.  A doctor’s slip will be required for every subsequent tardy.  The administrator or designee will also request a parent conference at school and a Student Study Team meeting may be held. Interventions in place will need to be re-evaluated.

 
 

  1. When ten (10) or more tardies have occurred, either documented or unexcused, the building administrator or designee will forward an Attendance Referral Form to the Marion Community Schools’ Attendance Officer, Grant County Probation Office and to the Grant County Prosecutors Office.  The Attendance Referral Form shall be accompanied by the documentation of previous written communications to said parent or guardian. 
  2.   
     
    Grades 7-12: 
     
    Number of Tardies            Interventions
    1                              Warning from Teacher; auto phone call.
    2                              Warning from Teacher; auto phone call.
    3                              Warning from Teacher; auto phone call; personal phone call made to the home by the teacher.
    4                              Consequence assigned by the teacher; personal phone call made to the home by the teacher.
    5                              Consequence assigned by the teacher.
    6 (or More)            Referral to administrator for disciplinary action; full day of In School Suspension (ISS).

     Every 8 tardies equal 1 absence. Absence policies then apply.

     
    Make-up Work:
     
    Each school will establish the rules regarding make-up work. The expectation is that all reasonable effort will be made to provide make-up work opportunities to all students. Each school must make effort to provide work in a timely manner, assuming a student will be absent more than one day. Students should be given reasonable time to complete make-up work. There may be some participating, interactive learning experiences that simply cannot be made up.

 

 

 

References:
Policy 5200
This page was last modified:
Sep. 04 2013