Attendance

Student Attendance

According to state law, it is the obligation of parents to ensure that every child under their care and supervision receives adequate education and, of compulsory attendance age, attends school.

Good attendance is of paramount importance to academic performance and overall success of students. Absences, whether excused or unexcused, are detrimental to the learning process. Regular attendance develops habits that are essential for success. It is the joint responsibility of students, parents/guardians and schools to ensure regular attendance. Excessive student absences may be symptomatic of problems, which necessitate joint efforts of the school, student, home and community agencies.

Students enrolled in the Aurora Public Schools are required to attend classes, unless excused for good reason, in accordance with the Colorado School Attendance Law (C.R.S. 22-33-101 and Article IX, Section 2 of the Colorado Constitution). Therefore, in cases of excessive absences, the district will utilize community agencies as well as Truancy court, in order to enforce regular attendance when student or parental/guardian responsibility has not been met.

Responsibilities

Student

  1. Attend school for all days of the adopted calendar
  2. Be in class on time, prepared for academic work. Students who are late less than half of the class period will be marked as “tardy.” Discipline will be assigned to students who have a pattern of habitual tardiness.
  3. Contact teachers immediately upon returning from an absence to receive make-up assignments and deadlines for completing them
  4. Complete work as assigned by the teacher when a pre-arranged absence is required
  5. Follow the established school procedure when enrolling in or withdrawing from class
  6. Follow the established school procedure for arriving at school late or leaving early; specifically, you check-in at the attendance office when arriving late, and you must be excused through the attendance office or nurse and sign-out if leaving early
  7. Ensure that parent/guardian contact the Attendance Line to excuse an absence

Parent

  1. Ensure that the student is attending school. We recommend that parents access the Parent Portal on Infinite Campus to frequently check their student’s attendance and grades.
  2. Understand that any absence, regardless of the cause, has a detrimental influence on student achievement
  3. Contact the Attendance Line (303-326-1662) regarding absences; specifically, call the Attendance office no later than 6 a.m. the day following the absence to excuse your student; only one parent error will be corrected
  4. In the case of extended home confinement, an arrangement must be made with an administrator to create a plan for continuing/making-up work
  5. Monitor the make-up work of the student who has missed class
  6. Follow the established school procedure when enrolling or withdrawing a student from school
  7. Provide the school with the current and accurate telephone number or other means of contacting a parent/guardian during the school day

School Notification to Home

Vista PEAK will notify parents of a student's unverified absence via a computerized phone message. Parents will be notified on the same day as the absence. Due to program limitations, the message cannot identify the student by name or the period(s) the student was absent. Parents are encouraged to call the attendance office to verify the student's name and the period(s) of absence. Occasionally, the attendance office staff will contact the parent to verify a reported absence.

Excused Absences

The following absences will be considered excused:

  1. Illness/injury documented by the student’s parent/guardian.
  2. Appointments/serious circumstances which cannot be resolved before or after school hours. To the extent possible, the parent/guardian is encouraged to notify the school in advance.
  3. A student’s request to participate in extracurricular experiences outside of the school building may be approved for up to five days under certain circumstances and on a case-by-case basis.
  4. A student’s parent/guardian may request approval from an administrator for an excused absence to attend to family business/family vacation (e.g. wedding, family trip). This excused absence is not to exceed three days per year and student must be in good academic standing (passing all classes), no unexcused absences, and have four or fewer excused absences in a semester.
  5. A student’s parent/guardian may request approval for an absence to be excused to attend a funeral. This absence shall not exceed three days. Approval shall be left to the discretion of the building administration.
  6. Absences due to suspension are considered to be excused for the purposes of truancy.

Unexcused Absences

  1. Students will be considered unexcused if they are absent from class without the prior knowledge and approval of their parent or guardian.
  2. Students who leave class without the teacher's permission will be considered truant.
  3. A court petition may be filed when the student has been deemed to be habitually truant and when interventions have been unsuccessful at changing the student’s behavior. A judicial officer will take action as he/she deems appropriate.

Habitual Truancy

According to Colorado attendance law, students who are truant the equivalency of four (4) school days in any one month or ten school days during any school year are defined as "habitually truant."

Requests for Work

Students requiring work/assignments due to extended excused absences (three days or more) should initially contact an administrator to gain approval. It is the responsibility of the student to contact teachers to get work that will be missed.

Make-Up Work During Absences

Any time a student misses a class for any reason whatsoever, that student will be expected to contact each teacher and complete the make-up work in order to receive credit for the work. This includes field trips, school activities, suspensions, group sessions, truancies, and the like. Make-up work is required and students who have been absent from class must request make-up work from the teacher no later than the next class meeting. Teachers will determine a reasonable amount of time for make-up work when students are absent, using a two (2) days for every one (1) day absent guideline. Teachers may provide an "alternative" learning experience for make-up work to any student who requests it upon returning to class.

Teachers will give academic credit to all make-up work that complies with the above guidelines. The only exception is teachers have the choice whether or not to give academic credit to the make-up work from an unexcused absence. If the absence was unexcused, the teacher should provide feedback but is not required to give credit for the work.

Absences due to School Activities

The absences for school activities will be recorded as a school activity. If participation at school-sponsored activities appears to interfere with the student’s performance in the classroom, the teacher and coach/sponsor will confer with the student.

When students are to be excused for school sponsored events, in or out of the building, it is the coach/sponsor’s responsibility to follow the procedures for field trips and submit to the attendance office in advance a list of participants for these functions.

Excessive Absences

The automated attendance line will notify parents of any student's absences. In order to simplify the policy, remember an ABSENCE IS AN ABSENCE. Students who miss class and are excused or unexcused, for field trips, in-house suspensions, out of school suspensions, counselor visits, nurse visits or trips to the office are considered absent. ALL ABSENCES ARE APPLICABLE TO THE RULES OF MAKE-UP WORK.

For more information regarding student attendance, please refer to Aurora Public Schools policy JE and regulation JE-R at https://schoolservices.aurorak12.org/attendance-truancy/

Arrival

Students should arrive no earlier than 7:00 a.m. unless prior arrangements have been made with a staff member.

Dismissal

A student’s activities, behavioral status, and tutoring/academic commitments will determine their dismissal time.

Returning Late from Lunch

Students returning late from lunch will have school consequences.

Medical Exemption

When a student has an extended absence due to a medical reason(s), the following steps need to be taken in order to receive the opportunity to make up credit for missed work.

  1. An ME grade may ONLY be determined by a school counselor, if it is for mental health reasons, or by a school nurse, if it is for medical reasons.
    1. If it is a medical issue, the nurse would inform the appropriate counselor.
  2. In order for a student to receive an ME grade, it is, as a general rule, all or nothing.
    1. There are occasional exceptions such as a student with a broken leg, who may not be able to physically participate in PE for a quarter and can receive an ME just for that one class, if they cannot be accommodated elsewhere.
    2. ME grades have no bearing on GPA.
    3. Detailed language regarding communication to teachers, the amount of time student will have to complete work, and timeline/validation of submission will be communicated during status meeting and added to conference tab in IC. All communication must be sent to impacted student, parent/guardian and counselor.
  3. The nurse/counselor must have received documentation from the medical professional overseeing the student that supports the designation of ME grades.
    1. This documentation is confidential and remains on file with the nurse/counselor.
    2. The information is not to be shared with staff unless deemed necessary for the safety of the student.
      1. FERPA rights will still remain in place
  4. The counselor then informs the teachers and registrar that the student is eligible to receive a ME for the quarter until the work has been completed.