Students enrolled in grades kindergarten through eight who are not in attendance a minimum of 166 days of the 180-day school year will be considered for retention. High school students must be in attendance for a minimum of 83 out of 90 class periods for a semester course (1 unit) in order to receive credit for that course. For any student affected by these provisions, an appeals process will be offered through the Student Support Team to review any extreme or exceptional circumstances related to an absence (such as surgery, a car accident, a death in the family, etc.). It is the responsibility of the parents to provide any supporting documentation for such an appeal.

The Jefferson City Board of Education believes that maximum learning occurs only when students attend class regularly. Research and experience have shown that students with good attendance records are more likely to have higher grades, present fewer discipline problems, have a more positive attitude toward school and learning, and form good work habits. The annual school calendar allows for an equivalent of 180 days of instruction. We encourage students to be in school and to be on time. Students who leave school before 11:10 or enter after 11:10 will be considered absent.

Absences

On the school day following an absence, parents must send a note on a full sheet of paper, which includes the following information:

  1. Student’s name
  2. Homeroom teacher’s name
  3. Date(s) of absence(s)
  4. Specific reason for the absence.
  5. Parent, guardian, doctor, or governmental agency signature (if a student has an appointment, a doctor’s excuse is requested)

In instances when no written excuse is provided within FIVE school days, such absences will be unexcused. Attendance will be tracked throughout the school year. The following procedures will be among those used to build a greater awareness of accumulating absences: periodic calls and/or visits made by the student’s teacher, the administrative staff, and/or Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher. A student shall be considered truant when he/she is subject to the compulsory attendance law and has accumulated more than five (5) days of unexcused absences during the school year. The following progression of steps will be followed in response to student absences:

  1. first-class letter after three (3) unexcused absences;
  2. certified letter from Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher for five (5) unexcused absences after two reasonable attempts to contact the student’s parent or guardian;
  3. attendance conference with Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher and attendance committee member(s) at seven absences, excused and/or unexcused;
  4. referral to the Jackson County Student Attendance Review Board or, if the circumstances warrant, directly to the court(s), after seven (7) unexcused absences.
  5. attendance conferences with Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher and attendance committee member(s) may be held for excessive tardies and/or early check-outs.

Our school calendar allows many opportunities for long weekend outings and extended vacations throughout the school year: Labor Day Weekend, Fall Break in October, Thanksgiving Holidays, Winter Holidays, MLK Holiday in January, Mid-Winter Holidays in February, Spring Holidays, and Summer Break. Please review the school calendar provided in the student agenda and plan accordingly in support of regular attendance.

Missed Assignments

It is the student’s responsibility to meet with his/her teacher(s) upon returning to class from an absence to discuss make-up work and policies. After a student is absent for two consecutive school days, contact may be made with the front office for assistance in obtaining any make-up work or missed assignments.

Punctuality

Punctuality is a life skill established at a young age. Students should be in the classroom prior to 7:25 each morning. Students entering the classroom after this time will be marked tardy and must be signed in at the front office by the parent, guardian, or any other person having control or charge as defined in O.C.G.A. 20-2-690.1. Tardies will be tracked throughout the school year. The following procedures will be among those used to reduce tardies: telephone calls; first-class letters; referral to the Attendance Committee and/or the Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher, lunch and/or recess in the Opportunity Room. 10

Early Check Outs

Please avoid early check-outs except when ABSOLUTELY necessary. Students leaving before the end of the day miss valuable instructional delivery. We respectfully request that early checkouts be reserved for emergencies or medical/dental appointments that cannot be scheduled after-school hours. Whenever a student is called from the classroom for early pick-up, instruction is disrupted for all the students. Research indicates that it takes seven minutes for students to regain their instructional focus after such a disruption. Further, early check-outs, as well as calls related to changes in transportation, can create an unmanageable situation for office staff. Help us provide your child every advantage for success in school by supporting our efforts. In addition, unless you have an emergency or medical appointment, we ask that you remain in the pick-up line until your child is called for loading.

Early checkouts will be tracked throughout the school year. The following procedures will be among those used to reduce early check-outs: telephone calls; first-class letters; referral to the Attendance Committee and/or the Jefferson City Schools’ visiting teacher, detention during or after school. Notification of a student’s change in transportation should be made prior to 1:30 p.m. to avoid a breakdown of communication and to avoid jeopardizing the safety of our students.

Note: Students are not allowed to leave the school campus prior to dismissal without parent or guardian permission. If it is absolutely necessary that a student leave before dismissal, the parent, guardian, or other person having control (as defined in O.C.G.A 20-2-690.1) must park in the parking lot and come to the front office to complete the sign-out process. The transportation list that the parent or guardian provides during the registration process will be used to verify those adults who have been authorized to check out an individual student. Please be prepared to provide personal identification if requested. Checkout will be denied to those individuals not listed on the student transportation list. Office personnel will notify the student via the intercom.