Hamden Public Schools District Policies

5115 - Attendance -Maximum Allowable Absences

Attendance - Maximum Allowable Absences

(Grades 9-12) 

It is well demonstrated that regular attendance is a key factor in a student's success in school. The Board of Education requires that accurate records are kept of the attendance of each child. A student should not be absent from school without the parent's/guardian's know]edge and consent. It is assumed that parents/guardians will allow their children to be absent from school only for reasons as set forth under "excused absences" as defined in the administrative regulations. Verification of absence should be given by the parent or guardian. 

Board policy with respect to excessive absences stresses prevention and remediation rather than mere imposition of punishment. Regular student attendance in school is essential to the educational 'process. Responsibility for assuring that students attend school rests by statute with the parent or other person having control of the child. To assist parents and others meeting the responsibility, the Hamden Board of Education, through its Superintendent, will adopt and maintain regulations designed to monitor student attendance and provide positive pro-active intervention. These regulations may also call for withholding of course credit if a student exceeds the maximum number of allowable absences. An Attendance Review Team, consisting of a unit administrator and counselor, will be responsible for determining course credit status. An appellate process to the Principal and, if requested, to the Superintendent, will be in effect. 

Reference:  Green and Gold Guide for Students and Parents, Hamden High School

Policy Adopted: June 27, 2006

Hamden Public Schools, Hamden, Connecticut

5115(a) Attendance - Maximum Allowable Absences (Grades 9-12)

A. Definitions:

  1. "Students" - A student enrolled in the Harnden Public Schools.
  2. "Unexcused Absences" - Any absence from an entire regularly scheduled school day which absence is not excused as defined below. 
  3. "Excused Absences" - An absence from an entire regularly scheduled school day for the following reasons.
    a.    Reasons of health, including illness, incapacity or doctor's visits. The District
    reserves the right to require a physician's verification or other appropriate certification for absences in excess of five days ( consecutive or accumulative).
    b.    Religious holidays
    c.    Court appearances
    d.    Funeral
    e.    Family hardship
    f.     Suspension or expulsion
    g.    Approved school activities
    h.    Absences from school for special activities with parental or guardian's consent. {prior written notice required)

B. Any student who has accumulated more than ten (10) full day absences in a semester course or twenty (20) full day absences in a full year course may lose his/her course credit. Classroom teachers will be expected to carefully monitor and record daily student attendance.

C. When a student is absent eight (8) full days in a semester course or sixteen (16) full days in a full year course, a warning letter will be sent to the student's parent/guardian with copies to the appropriate administrator, guidance counselor and nurse. The student will be personally contacted by the counselor. He/she will be counseled on the importance of good attendance and the consequences of the new regulation. Every effort win be made by school personnel to promote a positive approach which will focus on student/parent/school collaboration in resolving the problem.

D. When a student exceeds ten (10) full day absences in a semester course and twenty (20) full day absences in a full year course, an Attendance Review Team, consisting of the unit administrator and counselor will meet within ten (10) days. The Review Team will note excused absences and consider mitigating factors before making its decision regarding credit. At all time, the Team will make every effort to act in the best interests of the student. The review Team will consider the input of faculty, school support personnel, the parent and student to insure that all factors are considered before a decision is made.

E. An appeals process to the High School Principal and School Superintendent will be· available.

F. The unit administrator and appropriate counselor will be the Attendance Review Team that will be solely responsible for restoring or denying credit. Student attendance records will be checked every two weeks by the unit administrator, counselor and school nurse. Also, the Attendance Review Team will meet biweekly to review the status of students who have exceeded the maximum number of allowable absences.

G.  The school nurse will review school attendance reports on a biweekly basis. She will identify any students who, in her judgment, have legitimate medical reasons for sustained absences (five (5) or more consecutive days). She will then notify the appropriate unit administrator and counselor. The school nurse will have an active role in the overall attendance review process. 

H.  A student who enters school after the beginning of the year well be allotted "a prorated umber of absences" based upon his or her enrollment date.


Regulation approved:  June 27, 2005

Hamden Public Schools, Hamden, Connecticut

5115  Appendices

Appendix A  High School Principal Letter - 8 Days Absent

Appendix B  High School Principal Letter - 11 Days Absent

Appendix C  High School Principal Letter - 16 Days Absent

Appendix D  High School Principal Letter - 21 Days Absent

Appendix E  Complaint Youth in Crisis