Attendance

ATTENDANCE POLICY AND PROCEDURES

Lebanon High School exists to improve lives through education. The Lebanon School District seeks to enroll and educate all resident children in the community, as required by law and district policy. It is the purpose of this attendance regulation to improve student learning, raise student achievement, and maximize the learning potential of all students at Lebanon High School. Students having an IEP, 504 Plan, IHP or other documented medical diagnosis that allows for excessive absences will be exempt from the excessive absence appeal process; if the student’s plan addresses reduced attendance.

email: attendance@lebanon.k12.mo.us

Download the Early Departure Request Form here


Compulsory Attendance

Missouri State Law requires all children between 7 and 17 years of age to regularly attend a public, private, parochial, parish, home school or a combination of such schools for the duration of the entire school term. Parents, guardians or other persons having legal custody of a student may obtain a court order requiring the student to attend school until the student receives a high school diploma or its equivalent, or reaches the age of 18. In addition, the Lebanon R-III School District provides educational programming for all students between the ages of five (5) and seven (7) and beginning at the age of three (3) for students qualified for special education services. The district may also provide preschool and adult education programs. Once enrolled in the district, the district expects the student to attend regularly and for the student’s parent or guardian or other adult having charge, control or custody of the student to communicate regularly and honestly with the district regarding the student’s absences. Because the Lebanon R-III School District Board of Education and district staff strongly believe that regular attendance is important in gaining the most from the educational experience and because state law requires district staff to report all instances of abuse and neglect, including educational neglect, the district will make every effort to ensure students are attending school as required by law.


Excessive Absences

Students will be permitted a maximum of six (6) total absences per class per semester. Students who are absent for more than six (6) class periods during the semester will not be eligible to earn credit for that course unless a waiver is granted through the appeals process.


Procedures

Students will be given a Student Handbook upon enrollment in Lebanon High School. The handbook shall contain the written attendance regulation. The attendance office will record each student’s absence by course period. When a student has accrued four (4) total absences in a class during the semester, the school will send a letter to the parent or guardian informing the parent or guardian that, in accordance with the published policies and regulations of the Board of Education, the student is in danger of not earning credit for the class due to excessive absences during the semester. However, if the parent or guardian cannot be reached, the school administration will enforce the policy as written.

When a student has accrued seven (7) total absences in a class during the semester, the student will not be eligible to earn credit for that class unless a waiver is granted through the appeals process.


The school will notify the parent or guardian by mail that the student has accrued seven (7) total absences and is not eligible to earn credit for the class unless a waiver is granted through the appeals process. Such notification shall include an Attendance Appeal Form. A student who has accrued seven (7) absences retains the option of receiving a grade of N (No grade, No credit). The student must maintain a passing grade during the grading period to receive a grade of N. If the student has not maintained a passing grade during the semester, the student will earn an F (Failure).


A student will not be denied an education at Lebanon High School even though he or she will not earn credit for the class as a result of having missed a substantial portion of the instructional program during the semester.


Exceptions

Approved, school sponsored, out-of-school activities (field trips, sporting events, etc.) will not be counted as absences for purposes of the excessive absence regulation. Absences resulting from significant, acute or chronic medical conditions may provide the basis for an exception as approved by the administration or an appeal. Therefore, all such conditions should be verified in writing by a physician or other health care official.


Attendance Appeal Process

IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE PARENT OR GUARDIAN TO INITIATE THE APPEAL PROCESS.


Upon the parent’s or guardian’s request and submission of the appeal form, the Attendance Appeals Committee shall meet to consider appeals regarding exceptions to the excessive absence regulation and the denial of credit pursuant to this regulation. The committee shall include, but is not limited to, the principal, an assistant principal, a counselor, and at least two (2) teachers. Other persons may be designated to serve as deemed appropriate.


Students who, pursuant to this excessive absence regulation, have accrued seven (7) total absences or who anticipate accruing seven (7) or more total absences attributable to illness or other valid reason, may appeal to the Attendance Appeals Committee for the purpose of requesting one (1) or more of the following:


1. An exception to this excessive absence regulation for unavoidable absence due to illness or other valid reasons;

2. An extension of the number of absences that shall accrue before credit will be denied; and/or

3. Other accommodation within the contents of this excessive absence regulation and that which is allowed by law and/or school district policy.


The committee will consider all the facts under the circumstances of each case in deciding whether to grant or deny the appeal. Relevant factors may include, but are not limited to the following:


1. The reason(s) for the accrued or anticipated absences;

2. The extent to which the reasons for each absence were documented at the time the absence occurred and/or at the time of appeal;

3. The distribution of absences during the semester, i.e., whether scattered throughout the semester or occurring as consecutive absences;

4. The duration of each period of absence;

5. The pattern of attendance prior to the accrual of absences in question;

6. Whether all class work has been satisfactorily completed; and

7. The extent to which class essential learning outcomes have been mastered for that course.


A parent or guardian who anticipates his or her child missing seven (7) or more class sessions of any class due to hospitalization, prolonged illness, or other valid reason may request an exception to the excessive absence policy in writing prior to the accrual of the seven (7) absences. If the parent or guardian does not submit such request prior to the date on which the seven (7) absences have accrued, the parent or guardian should request an appeal of the automatic denial of credit in the same manner as for any other appeal under the excessive absence regulation.


The appeal committee will take into consideration valid absences that include any of the following:


1. Doctor, dental, counseling, or other healthcare appointments.

2. Hospitalization or placement in a healthcare facility.

3. Absences related to a student’s disability or medical condition (per an IEP, 504 Plan, IHP or other documented medical diagnosis that does not already allow for excessive absences by addressing reduced attendance).

4. Funeral Services.

5. Family emergencies as approved by the administration.

6. Court appearances.

7. Religious observations.

8. Licensing exams.

9. College or other school visits.

10. Deployment or return from deployment of a parent or guardian to a combat zone or combat support posting, at the discretion of the school administration.

11. Absences for any other valid reason that are pre-arranged and/or approved by the administration.


The parent or guardian of a student who has accrued seven (7) total absences may submit an appeal to the Attendance Appeals Committee requesting credit for the courses in question.

The appeal may be submitted on the district’s Attendance Appeal Form provided to the parent or guardian, or in other written or typed form that provides the following information:


1. Date of appeal.

2. A complete explanation of the reason(s) why the appeal should be granted.

3. Any appropriate documentation.

4. Signature of the parent or guardian.


Within one (1) week of the Appeal Committee’s final decision, the student, parent or guardian will be notified. If the parent or guardian does not agree with the final decision of the Appeal Committee, he or she may appeal the matter to the superintendent or designee for further review and consideration.


Steps to Follow When Absent From School

Please make sure you read and understand the following information as it requires parents, guardians and students to be accountable for notifying the school regarding student absences.


1. A parent or guardian should notify the attendance office on the day of (or before) the absence (417-657-6006, Extension 6004). If the attendance office secretary is on another line, it is acceptable and desired that the message be left on voice mail. The messages are given prompt attention.

2. The attendance office should be contacted prior to known doctor, dental, and family appointments. A student must submit a signed departure form and sign out before leaving school, and sign in upon returning to school.

3. If it is impossible to call, the parent or guardian must write an excuse giving names, dates, and reason for absence.

4. Students will be allowed one (1) day for every day missed to complete make-up work.

5. Students absent for authorized school activities are responsible for making up all work missed.

6. An absence for an authorized school activity simply allows the student the privilege of making up the work within a reasonable time (established by the teacher) and does not excuse the student from the make-up work.

7. Students who attend school, but leave early for another school activity, may be required by their teacher to turn in any assignment due that day.

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