Students 340

Attendance of Students

Background:

The Division recognizes the importance of daily regular attendance of students.  Students are required to attend school regularly in accordance with the Education Act, sections 154 and 156 through 162, and these administrative procedures.

Procedures:

  1. The Director of Education or designate will appoint local attendance counsellor(s) in accordance with the Education Act.
  2. The Principal shall:
    1. Be authorized to implement procedures that are consistent with the Education Act and other directives issued by the Minister, Board policy and within the limitation established by the Director or designate.
    2. Procedures pertaining to reasons for absences must include:
      1. Parents/guardians shall be requested to communicate with the Principal, or designate, when a student is absent from school.
      2. When the school has not been previously notified by the parent/guardian of the reason for the student’s absence, and the student is not self-supporting, a written explanation from the parent/guardian shall be required for any absence. The Principal may waive this requirement if other means are used to monitor attendance.   
      3. When an elementary student is absent without explanation an attempt shall be made by the Principal, or designate, to contact the home.
      4. If a teacher suspects that a student is truant, the Principal, or designate, shall be notified immediately.
    3. Ensure that attendance records of students are kept in accordance with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education regulations and Board policy.
    4. Ensure that cases of non-attendance are reported to the Principal.
  3. The Principal shall investigate reasons for non-attendance, and if deemed appropriate, involve other school or system personnel such as Vice Principals, school liaison workers and guidance counsellors, in such investigations. Counselling and persuasion shall be preferred approaches to encouraging regular attendance.  Exceptions to school attendance  include:
    1. The pupil is under a program of instruction elsewhere with the approval of the board of education;
    2. The pupil is unable to attend school by reason of illness or other unavoidable cause considered sufficient by the local attendance counsellor or principal;
    3. The pupil has been suspended or expelled from school;
    4. The pupil has been excluded from attendance at school pursuant to The Public Health Act, 1994;
    5. The Director, after investigation is of the opinion certified in writing, that continued attendance at school is not productive or is detrimental to the pupil or to the school;
    6. The pupil is engaged in work-experience or other educational programs authorized by the Board of Education;
    7. The pupil is absent from school on a holy day of the church or religious denomination of which the pupil or pupil’s parent or guardian is a member;
    8. The pupil is absent from school with the approval of his or her parent or guardian for the purpose of receiving medical or dental treatment;       or
    9. The pupil is absent from school in order to accompany his or her parent or guardian on a period of extended travel outside the school division. In the case where the extended travel is beyond five school days:
      1. The parent or guardian shall inform the principal of the anticipated period of absence;
      2. Where the principal considers appropriate, consult with teaching staff to determine what measures should be employed to maintain the student’s progress in their courses of study.
  4. The Principal shall report cases of non-attendance to the local attendance counsellors in accordance with The Education Act. If a student has more than 4 days of unexplained absences in a month or any 10 day period, the principal shall report the absence to the attendance counsellor.
  5. In cases of chronic non-attendance, the local attendance counsellors shall advise parents or guardians, and other persons in charge, by registered mail, of their responsibilities.
  6. The Principal will ensure in cases of chronic non-attendance that contact with the student/family is maintained and efforts to achieve regular attendance are ongoing. After 20 days of non-attendance, at the discretion of the principal, the student may be withdrawn from school using the appropriate reason code. (Appendix F, The registrar’s handbook).
  7. The local attendance counsellors, after consulting with the Director, shall inform the parents/guardians, by registered mail, when legal proceedings are being considered.
  8. The local attendance counsellor shall provide an annual report to the Director of Education.

 

References:

Section 16, 85, 87, 108, 109, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162, 163, 175 Education Act

Revised:

June 2016

December 2017