Attending school daily is essential for a student to make the most of his or her education and reach their full potential in life. Students who miss class miss out on learning. When it comes to student performance, every day counts. Therefore, the student and parent should make every effort to avoid unnecessary absences.
Every absence – in any grade, excused or not – can impact a child’s academic achievement. Students who miss 18 or more days in a school year – just 10% - are considered chronically absent, which can hurt their academic achievement and put them at-risk of dropping out. Statistics show that students who attend school regularly are more likely than students who are chronically absent to:
- Graduate and go on to college
- Score higher on standardized tests
- Learn to read well by the 3rd grade
- Be more engaged in school, feel better about themselves and are less likely to be depressed
- Build good habits for school and life
- Break the cycle of poverty
The District Attendance team strives to work with students and parents to improve daily attendance, which increases student success. Texas Law requires that a student between the ages of 6 and 18 attend school and students absent without valid excuses will be considered in violation of the compulsory attendance laws, making them subject to disciplinary action. Please see the SISD Student/Parent Handbook
for more information.
The attendance procedure followed by the District Attendance team is:
- District Warning Letter is sent at 3 unexcused absences to the student’s address to notify parents of the absences and possible consequences.
- A Truancy Intervention Hearing (TIH) is scheduled if unexcused absences continue to accumulate. A home visit is made by a Student Support Officer to deliver the notification.
- At the TIH, the absences are discussed and a Truancy Contract may be signed by the student, parent and attendance team member. This meeting addresses the state attendance laws, impact on the student’s grades and discipline and provides information on social services. The goal of this intervention is to prevent a court filing.
- If a parent needs to reschedule a TIH, contact the Student Services office.
- If a student does not attend the TIH, an attempted phone call or campus or home visit is made. It is IMPORTANT that parent contact information is provided to the school and up to date.
- If unexcused absences continue in violation of the Truancy Contract, a Court Filing will occur. Texas Law requires school districts to file on a student or parent when the student misses 10 or more days or parts of days within a 6 month period of time without a valid excuse. The options for filing include:
- Failure to Attend School for students ages 12-17 in Justice of the Peace Court and/or
- Parent Contributing to Non-Attendance for all parents/guardians in Justice of the Peace Court and/or
- Truancy for students ages 10-16 in Juvenile Court, County Court at Law
The goal of a court filing is not to punish the student and parent – it is to improve school attendance and student success. Parents can view their student’s attendance and grades through the Parent Self Serve
. Helpful information and tips for parents can be found in the links below.
Attendance Works is a national and state initiative that promotes better policy and practice around school attendance. We promote tracking chronic absence data for each student beginning in kindergarten, or ideally earlier, and partnering with families and community agencies to intervene when poor attendance is a problem for students or schools.
Since their founding as a non-profit in 2010, Get Schooled have used the media and messengers of popular culture to inspire and motivate teens on their educational journey through high school and into higher education. They believe that engaging and motivating today's youth can be as simple as tapping into the 'sizzle' that they love while delivering the 'substance' they need to be successful.
E3 Alliance is a regional, data-driven education collaborative based in Austin, Texas. They are helping to build the strongest educational pipeline in the country to drive regional economic prosperity. Founded in 2006, E3 Alliance acts as a catalyst for change, working to break-down barriers and build better alignment across the education continuum. They believe that only through greater educational achievement for current and future generations of children, can Central Texas realize economic prosperity and a high quality of life for our community. Such achievement requires systemic change from cradle to career, and that is their commitment to our community.