Houlton Elementary
Attendance

Compulsory Student Attendance – Policy #431

Regular attendance at school is vital to student learning and success. Student success is at risk when the student is not in school.

The primary responsibility for regular school attendance of a child rests upon the child’s parent(s) or guardians. In addition, school officials have a legal responsibility to enforce student attendance in school. It is the intent of the Hudson School District to work as closely as possible with parents/guardians regarding student attendance. Building administrators (principals and associate principals) are the Board of Education’s designated school attendance officers.

All absences require parent/legal custodian’s written verification in order to be excused. The verification is to be submitted to the building administrator. If written verification is not received within three school days after the child’s return to school, the absence will be unexcused.

If a student is absent from school without an acceptable excuse for part or all of five (5) or more days on which school is held during a school semester, a parent/legal custodian will be notified in writing and requested to attend a meeting. The date for the meeting shall be within 5 school days after the date the notice was sent, except that with the consent of the student’s parent/legal custodian the date for the meeting may be extended for an additional 5 school days. If the meeting between the parent/legal custodian and school personnel is not held within 10 school days after the notice is sent, court proceedings may be initiated relating to the truancy without the required meeting.

Once ten (10) absences, full day or part day, excused or unexcused, have been reached in one semester, all further absences will be subject to an attendance review per Procedure 431-RULE-Attendance. If the total number of absences, both excused and unexcused, are contributing to a student’s poor performance in one or more classes/subjects, then future requested excused absences which can be denied may be denied. If the unexcused absences of a student meet the legal criteria for habitual truancy, then a truancy referral may be made to the court system.

The building administrator will approve a student absence for the following reasons:

  • Religious holiday.
  • Release time for religious instruction.
  • A court appearance or other legal procedure which requires the presence of the student.
  • A quarantine as imposed by the public health officer.

The building administrator may approve a student absence for the following reasons:

  • A student not in the proper physical or mental condition to attend school or an educational program.
    • a. The District may request the parent or guardian of the child, after three days of consecutive or non-consecutive absences, to obtain a written statement from a physician, licensed psychologist, licensed chiropractor, or Christian Science practitioner, dentist, or optometrist, as proof of the physical and mental condition of the child. Such excuse shall be in writing, shall state the period of time for which it is valid and shall not exceed thirty (30) days.
    • b. Students may be excused from physical education for a maximum of three consecutive classes upon request of the parent and verification by the health assistant. A physician’s statement is required for students presenting more long-term or chronic medical problems interfering with the ability to fully participate in physical education. Although the requirements for physical education may be waived with a medical excuse, it is the goal of the District to maintain the involvement of every student in physical education by introducing necessary modification and adaptations.
  • Medical services which cannot be scheduled outside of school hours.
  • A death of a family member or person of significance to the student.
  • A medical condition in the family which requires the presence of the student.
  • Transportation delay beyond the control of the student.
  • Family vacation/event which cannot be scheduled outside of school hours.
  • School sponsored events.

Students will not be denied credit in a course or subject solely because of absences from school. However, only senior students who attend classes a minimum of 90% of their scheduled time during the final semester will be allowed the privilege of participating in the graduation ceremony. Absences will be excused pursuant to this policy. An appeal of the High School administration’s decision to not allow the student’s participation in the school’s graduation ceremony may be made to the Superintendent. The Superintendent’s or the Superintendent’s designee decision shall be final.

Students suspended from school by building administrator for disciplinary reasons are regarded neither as excused or unexcused and should be recorded as suspended from school versus absent from school. Such students must be allowed to make-up all class assignments, quizzes, examinations, and projects missed during the term of the suspension.

A complete list of Hudson School District Policies are available on the School District’s homepage under the Board of Education tab (click here).