Attendance

Statement of Overall Objectives
School attendance is both a right and a responsibility.  The School District is an active partner with students and parents in the task of ensuring that all students meet or exceed the New York State Learning Standards.  Because the District recognizes that consistent school attendance, academic success and school completion have a positive correlation; the School District will develop, review and, if necessary, revise a Comprehensive Student Attendance Policy to meet the following objectives: 
The goal of school attendance policies and programs is to encourage students to come to school ready to learn.  Some of the objectives of attendance taking are:
  • To know the whereabouts of every student for safety and other reasons.
  • To determine the District�s average daily attendance for state aid reimbursement.
  • To verify that individual students are complying with education law in relation to compulsory attendance.
  • To identify individual and group attendance patterns in order to provide attendance improvement programs and services.
  • To raise student achievement to higher levels by encouraging regular attendance.
 Description of Strategies to Be Employed to Accomplish These Objectives
The School District will create and maintain a positive school building culture by fostering a positive physical and psychological environment where the presence of strong adult role models encourages respectful and nurturing interactions between adults and students.  This positive school culture is aimed at encouraging a high level of student bonding to the school, which in turn should lead to increased attendance.
        a)           Daily attendance will be taken each morning by the classroom teacher and reported to the school nurse.  Attendance will be recorded in the official attendance register.
b)           Parents/guardians should call the school nurse no later than 8:30 a.m. to report their child�s absence from school.
c)            Students who arrive late to school must report to the receptionist�s office for a late pass. Lateness will be recorded in the attendance register.         
d)           A written note must explain each instance of absence from a parent/guardian. The student upon returning from absence should bring this note to school.
e)           Participation in after-school events requires student attendance during the school day.
f)             The school nurse will notify parents/guardians by telephone of any unauthorized absences and remind then of the attendance policy.
g)           If a student is absent from school without an excuse, the Superintendent will review the attendance policy with the student and parent/guardian.  Students who have been absent from school or excessively late without an excuse will be subject to a series of incremental interventions including counseling, loss of privileges (ex: participation in after-school activities or school sponsored events), detention and/or in-school suspension in accordance with the district�s discipline policy.
h)           Attendance data will be analyzed periodically to identify patterns or trends in student absences.
i)             Parents/guardians will be notified of student attendance on quarterly report cards.
j)             Recognition of excellent attendance will be done on a regular basis.
k)           Early dismissal is granted in emergency situations and when appointments (medical, dental, etc.) cannot be made on other than school time.  A written note from the parent requesting such dismissal and clearly noting the date, time and reason for early dismissal must be handed in to the school nurse on the morning of the requested dismissal.
 Student Absences and Excuses
The following reasons for student absences from school are recognized by the Board of Education as excused absences:
a)           Sickness.
b)           Home instruction (due to sickness).
c)            Sickness or death in the family.
d)           Impassible roads.
e)           Religious observance.
f)             Quarantine.
g)           Required court appearances.
h)           Health related appointments.
i)             Family emergency (fire in home, crises, etc.).
j)             Other such reason as may be approved by the Board of Education.

Process for Intervention Strategies

The superintendent will utilize the attendance intervention listed below to improve an individual student�s attendance.  Prior to utilizing these interventions the superintendent may consult with the student, teacher, parent, Director of Student Services or School Social Worker to determine which interventions are needed in order to have an impact on improving attendance.
     a)        Attendance Interventions
1.      Verbal warning / Teacher discussion
2.      Parent / Guardian notified by nurse
3.      Referral to Superintendent
4.      After-school detention
5.      Attendance / Behavior contract
6.      Parent / Administrator / Student conference
7.      Loss of privileges
8.      Referral to family court � PINS (Pupils in need of Supervision)
b)         Designation of Reviewer
The School Nurse will be responsible for reviewing pupil attendance records and initiating appropriate action to address unexcused pupil absence, tardiness and early departure consistent with the comprehensive pupil attendance policy.
c)          Excessive Absence / Pupil Progress
 
d)      Parent Notification
When a pupil is marked absent, the school nurse will contact the family to verify such absence.  This contact will take place within the first hour of the school day.  When a pupil�s excessive absence or tardiness begins to impact learning, a letter from the principal will be sent home informing the parents of such.  If such communication does not have a positive impact on the pupil�s attendance, the principal and Child Study Team will set up a meeting with the parent(s) to clarify the importance of regular attendance and the consequences of excessive absence.
 Annual Review
Attendance records will be provided to the Board of Education for annual review at the end of each school year.  If such records show a decline in pupil attendance the Board, or governing body, shall make any revisions to the comprehensive pupil attendance policy deemed necessary to improve pupil attendance.

 Public Dissemination of Information

The Amagansett Board of Education shall promote community awareness of this comprehensive attendance policy by:
a)           Providing a plain language summary of the policy to the parents at the beginning of each school year and taking such other steps deemed necessary to promote the understanding of such policy by students and their parents;
b)           Providing each currently employed teacher with a copy of the policy, and providing new teachers with a copy of the policy upon their employment; and
c)            Having the plan shared and reviewed annually by the district Shared Decision Making Committee.
d)           Making copies of the policy available to any other member of the community upon request.