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Attendance policy

Novi High School Attendance Policy
Section 1561 of the Revised School codes states, "Except as otherwise provided in this section, every parent, guardian, or other person in this state having control and charge of a child from the age of six to the child's sixteenth birthday shall send that child to a public school during the entire school year.  Beginning with the class of 2016, the age for student compulsory attendance is eighteen (18) years of age.

The Novi board of Education believes that regular attendance in school is important to the educational growth of the student; however, legitimate circumstances may exist whereby a student is unable to attend school such as:

  • Personal illness or illness in the family
  • Death in the family
  • Court appointments
  • Religious holidays
  • Prearranged family vacations*
  • Medical appointments that cannot be made during out-of-school hours
  • Other prearranged absences (including college visitation), provided pre-approval is granted
  • Religious instruction and/or obligations, arranged in advance and verified by written parental excuse
  • School-sponsored activities
  • School-imposed suspensions

Every school day is important in the educational development of the student.  Punctual and regular attendance is essential for a student to do well in school.  If an absence or late arrival is necessary, parents/guardians should contact the attendance office recording system.

A student will be considered truant if they are absent from school and unverified for more than five days in succession; or is absent from school for any reason 10 days or more in a 30-day period, or is absent 30 days or more for any reason in a school year.  Failure to earn credit or a grade may result from academic requirements not being completed.

*Parents are encouraged not to take their child out of school for vacations.  With proper notification, absences due to vacations will be considered verified, however, it should be noted that these will count toward their ten allowed absences.  Proper notification, in the form of a Vacation Request Form, must be submitted in advance to your student's assigned administrator.  Should these absences cause or contribute to a student exceeding ten absences they will be subject to the consequences of the attendance policy.  Parents are encouraged to schedule vacations during scheduled vacations provided throughout the school year.

Novi High School Attendance Policy: Philosophy
We believe that active participation in the classroom experience is critical to ensuring that our students are exposed to the best education experience that we have to offer them.  We believe that discussions and classroom activities are not replicable and that they are essential to the intellectual and emotional development of our students; in fact, these interactions are necessary for developing the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for participation in a diverse, competitive and ever-changing world.  

We believe that successful student attendance is a shared responsibility between the school and the home: for the student to be present in their classes, for the teacher to keep accurate records of attendance and for the parent(s) to assist both by communicating any legitimate absence to the school in a timely fashion.  Moreover, we expect all parties involved to help promote consistent and responsible attendance in school.

We believe that each and every student is creative and intelligent, that they have much to offer the educational environment of our school and that their input and insight are essential, not only to their growth, but to that of everyone else as well.

Definitions/Terms

  1. Documented Absences: A documented absence will not count against the total number of student absences.  To ensure accurate attendance records, it is necessary for all related documentation to be turned in upon the student's return to school.  Documented absences will not be accepted after two (2) school days following the absence.  The following are considered documented absences:Hospitalization/medical leave or a doctor's appointment related to an illness, religious obligations, mandatory court appearance, funeral
  2.  Verified Absences: Parent or legal guardian has called the attendance office or provided a note within 24 hours verifying the student was not at school with         parental acknowledgement.  A verified absence is typically one of the following but not limited to: illness verified by parent, doctors appointment, pre-arranged vacation - forms can be obtained in the Attendance Office and must be filled out and signed by a parent/guardian, teachers and the student's assigned administrator prior to the absence.  Pre arranged absences will count toward the ten (10) total absences allowed by the policy.  NOTE: It should be noted that parents cannot verify a class period absence that occurs during the school day.  (Example: verity a class period absence so that their student can finish an assignment)
    3. Unverified Absences: Any absence in which a parent has NOT called or provided a note within 24 hours of the absence, an automated phone call is made to the parent/guardian after every unverified absence.  NOTE: A student will receive an absence for a class period if they arrive 10 minutes or more late or departs 10 minutes or more early excluding school business, without permission, or misses 10 minutes or more for personal business.
    4. Tardies: A student will be considered tardy if they are not present in their assigned class when the tardy bell rings.  Students who accumulated five unexcused tardies (per class, per semester) will be assigned one half-hour detention to be completed within the week of being assigned the detention. A new detention will be assigned for each additional tardy after five.  Students who fail to attend detention will be assigned two additional detentions.  Detention will be served in an assigned location and students will be notified by the assigning teacher.  Detentions will be held on Mondays and Thursdays from 2:10 PM to 2:40 PM and on Friday mornings from 6:30 AM to 7:00 AM of each week.  Students who do not complete their assigned detentions in a timely manner will be referred to their assigned administrator for further discipline.
Student/Parent Responsibilities
  1. Be aware of the attendance policy guidelines and understand the implications therein
  2. Monitor student's attendance record through the use of MIStar/Parent Connect and/or communicated with the school
  3. To verify an absence, parents should call as soon as possible, but must notify the attendance office by 3:00 PM the following school day.  Parents may call (248) 449-1501 or send in a note to verify an absence
  4. If a notification of the absence does not occur within the requisite 24-hour period, it will be considered an unverified absence
  5. Acquiring and completing the make-up work is the sole responsibility of the student
  6. Students will be able to make up the work that is missed for a verified absence within the same number of days that they have been verified from school
  7. Work that is missed during a verified absence totaling more than three (3) days may also become the responsibility of the parent in the event that they wish to pick up the work at the high school attendance office.  (24 hour notice is required)
  8. Yearly cumulative attendance will be reflected on the official transcript
Communication
As a means of communicating attendance, the following methods will be utilized:
  1. Parents will be called each day there is an unverified absence
  2. Students and parents may access MIStar/Parent Portal daily, period by period
  3. Report cards will show attendance every nine weeks
  4. A letter will be generated by MiStar and sent home by the Attendance Office staff upon the seventh (7) absence (verified/unverified combination).  This letter will summarize the attendance policy and outline the consequences and appeal procedure.

Consequences
If a student exceeds ten (10) absences in a course, when combining verified and unverified absences, (documented, school business or suspensions do not apply), and IF the student has demonstrated proficiency by earning a passing grade for the entire semester, the student will received credit for the class, but will earn a grade point average of 0.00 for the class to be factored into their overall GPA.

We do understand that extenuating circumstances sometimes occur over the course of a semester that leads to an excess of 10 verified/unverified absences.  Consequently, an appeal can be completed as long as the following criteria are met:
Appeal: In order for a student to appeal they must: initiate an appointment with their assigned administrator upon their tenth absence to develop an Attendance Plan, score a 70% or higher on the end of semester common assessment/Capstone, complete ALL conditions of the Attendance Plan.  NOTE: All conditions must be met before any changes to a student's transcript will be made and NO attendance appeal will be considered if the class was NOT passed.

Truancy
According to the Compulsory Education law, "Every parent, guardian, or other person in this state having control and charge of a child from the age of six to the child's sixteenth birthday, shall send that child to the public schools during that entire school year.  The child's attendance shall be continuous and consecutive..."  The Oakland County Early Truancy Intervention Protocol, with the support of both the Probate Court and the Family Court, provides both guidelines and accountability with regard to this.  The Novi Community School District will consider a child truant if: they have received five unverified absences in succession, they have received 10 verified absences from school in a thirty day period, the yahve 30 unverified/verified absences in a school year.