Hamilton County Board of Education
The Hamilton County Board of Education believes in the establishment of a tradition of regular school
attendance for each student. This establishes the fi rst step toward a successful academic career culminating
in a high school diploma and this is an essential concept to learn for the job market.
The Hamilton County Department of Education has a state approved system for maintaining attendance
records for each student enrolled in the district.
1. Personal Illness: Students are excused who are sick and whose attendance would be
detrimental to their health and the health of other students. A physician's statement
may be required.
2. Death in Immediate Family: Students may be excused for three (3) days in the event
of a death in their immediate families including mother, father, stepparent, brother,
sister, or grandparent. Extenuating circumstances may require a longer period of excused
3. Family Illness: Students having an illness in the family which requires them to give
temporary help will be excused from attendance after receipt of a physician's statement
concerning the necessity of the student's assistance.
4. Religious Holiday: Students shall be excused on special or recognized religious holidays
regularly observed by that particular faith. Prior approval is required should these
days occur while school is in session.
5. Personal: Students who are absent for a good cause such as a doctor or dental appoint
ment which cannot be scheduled at times other than school hours, court appearances,
etc. may be excused upon proof of appointment. Prior approval by parent or guardian
and the principal or his designee is required.
6. Approved School Sponsored Activities: Students shall be marked present when participating
in a school sponsored activity away from the school building.
The law requires that school offi cials report to the court and parent/guardian of a child who is unlawfully
absent from school for any fi ve (5) days during the school year (this means an aggregate of fi ve (5) days)
without adequate excuse. When a student reaches fi ve (5) unexcused absences, the school will notify the
parent/guardian that their child must attend school on a regular basis by mailing the Attendance Notifi
cation Letter. After ten (10) days absence without adequate excuse, a student is referred to the school
social worker. If the child continues to accrue unexcused absences after the referral, a legal notice will
be mailed by the school social worker.
Review: Annually, Attendance in April
Page 2 of 2
This notice shall serve as intent to fi le a truancy or dependency and neglect petition with Hamilton
County Juvenile Court unless proper documentation is provided to the school within fi ve (5) days of
receipt of this notice.
EXPLANATION OF ABSENCES
By law students must attend school daily. HCDE will allow parent/guardian excuses to serve as documentation
for three (3) personal illness days only. After three (3) parent/guardian excused personal
illness days, parents must provide medical services documentation for the following: personal illness,
family illness, or personal (as defi ned above). To avoid student absences being recorded as unexcused,
a written statement signed and dated by the parent/guardian and any medical documentation should be
presented to the appropriate school offi cial within fi ve (5) days of the student returning to school.
PROCEDURAL DUE PROCESS
The established policy should be reviewed periodically to ensure that procedural due process is provided.
1. Prior to its enactment, notice of the rules, regulations, and penalties are provided to
students and parents.
2. All students receive a written copy of the policy. Students who arrive during the school
year also receive the policy.
3. Policy is to be enforced by all in a fair, consistent, nondiscriminatory manner.
4. The policy provides for exceptions through an impartial hearing and appeals process.
5. Announce policy at student assemblies and parent meetings.
Legal References: Cross References:
1. TRR/MS 0520-1-3-.08(1)(a) Extracurricular Activities 4.300
2. TRR/MS 0520-1-3-.03(15); TCA 49-6-2904 Reporting Student Progress 4.601
3. Attendance Accounting Procedural Manual, Promotion and Retention 4.603
Minimum Standards and Guidelines, State Department of Education Recognition of Religious Beliefs 4.803
4. TCA 49-6-3017; TCA 49-2-2-3(b)(7) Student Records 6.600
5. TCA 10-7-504; 20 U.S.C. § 1232g
6. TCA 49-6-3108