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Attendance Policy

Attendance Policy

The Education Law required that the students enrolled in the schools of this District attend school on every school day unless legally excused. The educational program offered by this District is predicated upon the presence of the student and requires continuity of instruction and classroom participation. The regular contact of students with one another in the classroom and their participation in a well planned instructional activity under the tutelage of a competent teacher are vital to this purpose. Absences other than excused absences as defined by State regulations have a highly adverse effect on the student as well as the entire educational program. Therefore, the Board of Education urges all parents to make every effort for their children to be in attendance, and this Comprehensive Attendance Policy shall apply to all students attending the Newark Valley Central School District.

A. Objectives
The objectives of the Comprehensive Attendance Policy are:
  1. to accurately track the attendance, absence, tardiness and early departure of students to and from school;
  2. to ensure sufficient pupil attendance of classes so that pupils may achieve State mandated education standards;
  3. to track student location for safety reasons and to account to parents regarding the location of children during school hours.
B. Definitions
Whenever used within the Comprehensive Attendance Policy, the following terms shall mean:
  1. Scheduled instruction: Every period that a pupil is scheduled to attend instructional or supervised study activities during the course of a school day during the school year.
  2. Absent: The pupil is not present for scheduled instruction.
  3. Tardy: The pupil arrives late for scheduled instruction.
  4. Early Departure: The pupil leaves prior to the end of the pupil’s scheduled instruction.
  5. Excused: Any absence, tardiness, or early departure for which the pupil has a valid school approved excuse. Such excused non-appearance shall include: personal illness, illness or death in the family, religious observance, quarantine, required court appearances, attendance at health clinics or other medical visits, approved college visits, military obligations, absences approved in advance by the Principal (i.e., job shadowing, take your daughter to work day, etc.) and other reasons as may be approved by the Commissioner of Education.
  6. Unexcused: Any absence, tardiness or early departure for which the pupil has no valid school approved excuse. Such unexcused non-appearance shall include shopping trips, family vacation, oversleeping, skipping class, and any other absence that is not excused.
C. Coding System
The following coding system shall be used to indicate the nature and reason for a pupil’s missing all or part of scheduled instruction:
  • E=excused
  • U=unexcused
  • A=absent
  • D=early departure
  • T=tardy
  • I=illness
  • F=family/funeral
  • M=medical /dental appointment
  • T=transportation issues
  • V=vacation/trip
  • E=educational
  • O=other
The time that the pupil arrived or departed will be recorded next to the entry code describing the nature and reason for the student missing all or part of the scheduled instruction.

For example, if a student left at 11:30 a.m. for a doctor’s appointment, the code would read:
E/D/M: 11:30 a.m.

Examples of EXCUSED Absences
  • FAMILY ISSUES (emergencies, family illness, etc.)
Examples of UNEXCUSED Absences
  • TRANSPORTATION ISSUES (missed bus, unable to get a ride, etc.)
  • PERSONAL APPOINTMENTS (shopping, hair, tanning, etc.)
D. In order to encourage student attendance, the following strategies and incentives shall apply:
  1. Attendance will not be used as a measure of student learning. Course credit is recommended based on student performance related to learning outcomes.
  2. For pupils enrolled in full-day instruction, the pupil’s parents (s) or person in parental relation shall be notified of a pupil’s excused and unexcused absence(s), tardiness or early departure according to the following:
    1. where a pupil has not been marked as present for scheduled instruction and the school has not been previously notified of the absence, the district shall attempt to contact the pupil’s parent (s) or persons in parental relation to learn the nature of the pupil’s absence(s) and notify the parent that the pupil has not arrived at school;
    2. for a pattern of unexcused absences, tardies, early departures, or any combination thereof, the pupil’s parent(s) or person in parental relation shall receive a notice containing the dates, times, and the nature of the pupil’s unexcused nonpresence.
  3. Disciplinary Procedures - The pupil may be subject to disciplinary procedures for unexcused absence, tardiness, or early departure, including verbal and written warnings, detentions, in-school suspensions, and loss of extra-curricular privileges, as described in the Code of Conduct.
  4. Incentives - District teachers shall work with others in the District to create and implement classroom-based incentive programs for excellent attendance.
  5. Intervention Strategy Development - The Building Principal shall meet each marking period with the Attendance Officer, other Counselors, and Administrators to review student attendance records, address identified patterns of unexcused pupil absence, tardiness and early departure, and review current intervention methods. Where the Principal determines that existing intervention policies or practices are insufficient, the Principal shall notify the Board of Education through the Superintendent prior to its annual review of the programs attendance records, of both insufficient practices and any proposed changes needing Board approval to implement.
  6. Counseling - Newark Valley will make available counseling to students with chronic attendance problems.
E. Attendance Officer

The Board shall designate a person as the Attendance Officer. The Attendance Officer, along with the Building Principal, will be responsible for reviewing pupil attendance records and initiating appropriate action to address excused and unexcused pupil absence, tardiness, and early departure consistent with the Comprehensive Attendance Policy including parent and district notification.
The Comprehensive Attendance Policy will be reviewed annually by the Board of Education.