A parent, guardian, or other person having charge of any child officially enrolled in the school district (kindergarten-grade twelve) shall explain in writing the cause of any and every absence of the child no later than three (3) days following the child’s return to school. A failure to furnish such explanation and shall be evidence of the child being truant each day he is absent. The child shall also be deemed truant for any absence determined by the principal. Seven unexcused absences within a school year constitute a student being truant for the purpose of filing a petition with the court. The Board shall develop an Early Warning Truancy Prevention Program timeline for reporting truancy shall define truancy status of any student as follows:
- First truancy/unexcused absence (A warning will be issued.):
The parent or guardian shall be notified by the school principal or his/her designee that the student was truant and the date of the truancy. The parent or guardian shall also be provided with a copy of Alabama’s compulsory school attendance laws and advised of the penalties that can be applied and the procedures that shall be followed in the event that other unexcused absences occur.
- No earlier than the third unexcused absence (A school conference will be scheduled.):
The parent or guardian shall attend a conference with the principal or his/her designee. Attendance by the parent or guardian is strongly suggested; however, the meeting notice
is considered ample communication for the need for corrective action on the part of the parent/guardian.
3. No earlier than the fifth unexcused absence (A district conference will be scheduled.):
The parent or guardian shall: (1) attend a conference with the attendance officer and principal or his/her designee and/or (2) participate in the early warning program provided by the juvenile court. Attendance at one of these conferences shall be mandatory.
4. No earlier than seventh unexcused absence, but within ten (10) school days (The truancy officer shall file a complaint/petition against the child and/or parent or guardian, if appropriate.)
- Child under probation (The school truancy officer should be notified by the juvenile probation officer of all children in the school system district under probation supervision by the juvenile court as consistent with state statue. Where a child under probation is truant, the school truancy officer should immediately notify the juvenile probation officer.)