Attendance Office



Compulsory Attendance
SHHS Policy
Excused Absences
Doctor Appointments
Religious Observance
Excuse Notes
Extracurricular Activities
Make-up Time
Make-up Work
Leaving School
Tardiness
Excessive Absence
V.O.E.
 

Compulsory School Attendance

State Law requires every child in the state who is at least six years of age and not more than eighteen years of age to attend school. Provisions of the law also impose severe penalties to those who do not attend regularly.

State attendance laws require students to be in attendance for at least ninety (90) percent of the days the class is offered in order to receive credit. The District imposes stricter attendance requirements. Students at South Houston High School may not be absent more than three days per course per semester in order to receive credit for the course for that semester. This requirement applies to both excused and unexcused absences, and also applies to absences caused by late enrollment at the beginning of the semester or transitions between school enrollments. An attendance committee will hear petitions for class credit from students who are absent more than three days per semester in any given course. The committee may grant credit when absences due to extenuating circumstances are determined to be acceptable.

District policy establishes guidelines for determining extenuating circumstances. District policy also establishes ways for students to make up work and allows the attendance committee to impose conditions, such as attending tutorials, in order for a student to regain credit lost because of absences.

Students must be in attendance for at least three (3) hours of the school day to be eligible to participate in any extracurricular activity that day or night. The principal may determine participation due to extenuating circumstances.

 

 

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South Houston High School Attendance Policy

After a student’s third cumulative absence in any class during a semester, the student shall be required to provide a statement from a doctor or health clinic verifying each absence. Failure to provide a doctor’s note for any absence after the third such absence will result in the absence being deemed unexcused. After the third absence, reguardless of the reason, the student will be required to make up all time missed to receive credit. All absences in any class beyond eight days per semester must be made up to be considered for credit restoration. See Make-up Time for more details.


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Excused Absence

Any child not exempted from compulsory school attendance may be excused for temporary absence resulting from personal sickness, sickness or death in the family, quarantine, weather or road conditions making travel dangerous, or any other unusual cause acceptable to the principal or superintendent. The reason for an absence must be stated in writing and signed by the parent or other person standing in parental relation to the child. The person discharging the duties of attendance officer of the school may investigate any case in which an excused absence is requested. Court related absences will be excused only with a statement from a proper legal authority. Students with either excused or unexcused absences shall be afforded the opportunity to make up missed work. If a student has an unexcused absence, he or she will not be eligible to participate in any school activity that day or night.


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Doctor Appointments

Absences for doctors appointments (health care professionals) will be counted as a day of compulsory attendance under the following guidelines.

  • The student must either start classes at the beginning of the day and/or return to school for at least one period on the same day of an appointment with a health care professional.
  • The student must return to school with the original medical verification stating the name of the doctor, the doctor’s telephone number, and the time of the appointment. (A receipt of payment will not be accepted.) The student must take the original doctor’s note to the attendance clerk. The deadline for submitting the verification shall not be extended beyond the second day the student is in school following the appointment.
  • The student must make up all classwork due and/or assignment the day of the absence in a timely manner.

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Religious Observance

Students are excused for observance of religious holy days, including days of travel to or from a site where the student will observe holy days, if before the absence, the parent, guardian, or person having custody or control of the student submits a written request for the excused absence.

Excused days for travel shall be limited to not more than one day for travel to and one day for travel from the site where the student will observe the religious holy days. A student whose absence is excused for the purpose of observing religious holy days shall not be penalized for the absence and shall be counted as having attended for purposes of calculating the average daily attendance in the District (Education Code 25.087; 19 TAC 129.21). Documentation will be required of all religious organizations.


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Excuses

A student must not sign a parent’s name even with the parent’s permission. Such a signature will be considered a forgery and will result in disciplinary action.

A student who has been absent from school must present a valid excuse to the attendance office the morning the student returns to school. If a student fails to bring a note from his or her parent, the student will receive an unexcused absence and may be subject to disciplinary action. Students must bring a note within two (2) school days.


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Absences for Extracurricular Activities

According to state law, a parental permission slip must be obtained before a student can be absent for any reason, including extracurricular activities which require the student to miss any class during the day. This includes athletic events, music programs, in-district performance trips, contests, yearbook and newspaper advertising sales, etc. Pre-filed parent permission forms are allowed for ongoing activities. The teacher, coach, or sponsor will send a note home for parent signature asking permission for the student to be off campus during the season/year to attend activities or events required by the student’s participation in that group.


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Make-up Time Choices


In order to be considered for restoration of credit, students must make-up the time that they miss. Students will start to aquire make-up time after the third absence in any class.

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Make-up Work

Students experiencing short-term absences from school may obtain their assignments from classmates, and the school office will secure textbooks with appropriate notice. For extended absences, the school office will also secure assignments from teachers. Requests for these assignments should be made twenty-four (24) hours in advance. For more information, see Handbook section entitled “Grading: Make-up Work.”


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Leaving School

A high school student needing to be dismissed during the school day must bring a note from a parent or guardian to the office before school begins. The student will be issued, at that time, an admit to the office to be used when the student leaves campus later in the day. The admit will indicate whether the absence is excused or unexcused.

If the student must leave because of a doctor’s appointment, he or she will be excused for the time of the appointment only and must return with a doctor’s verification showing the doctor’s name, phone number and time of appointment. Identification will be required before students are released to any persons during school hours.

Identification will be required (i.e. picture ID) before students are released to persons unfamiliar to school personnel. A person whose name is not listed on the enrollment card cannot pick up a child without verbal or written permission to school personnel by the parent or guardian.


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Excessive Absenteeism/Tardiness

School districts throughout Texas are required by state law (Texas Education Code 25.095) to notify all parents at the beginning of the school year of the following: If a student is absent from school without excuse for 10 or more days or parts of days within a six-month period in the same school year, or on three or more days or parts of days within a four-week period, the parent may be prosecuted for “parent contributing to truancy” and the student may be prosecuted for “failure to attend school.” The school district is required by law (TEX 25.087) to notify a parent if the student has been absent without excuse on three days or parts of days within a four-week period.

School authorities are required to investigate absences. Referrals to attendance officers and/or court may occur upon the student’s first truancy, third unexcused absence, fifth tardy, or any instance in which absences seem excessive, habitual, or subject to a pattern.


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V.O.E. – Verification of Attendance

Students may receive the Verification of Attendance Certification only if they:

  • Have met the 90 percent attendance requirement for course credit in the current semester the VOE application is submitted
  • Have not failed to receive credit for any course(s) during the previous semester due to excessive absences
  • Are clear of all obligations, financial or otherwise