Peshtigo School District
Bylaws & Policies


State law requires the Board of Education to enforce the regular attendance of students. Further, the Board recognizes that the District's educational program is predicated upon the presence of the student and requires continuity of instruction and classroom participation. The regular contact of students with one another in the classroom and their participation in a well-planned instructional activity under the tutelage of a competent teacher are vital to this purpose.

All children between six (6) and eighteen (18) years of age shall attend school regularly during the full period and hours, religious holidays excepted, that the school in which the child is enrolled is in session until the end of the term, quarter, or semester of the school year in which the child becomes eighteen (18) years of age, unless they fall under an exception under State law, this policy, or administrative guideline issued under this policy. A child who is enrolled in five (5) year-old kindergarten shall attend school regularly, religious holidays excepted, during the full period and hours that kindergarten is in session until the end of the school term.

Parent Notification of Absence Required

The District Administrator shall require, from the parent of each student or from an adult student, who has been absent for any reason either a written or oral notification stating the reason for the absence and the time period covered by the absence. The Board reserves the right to verify such statements and to investigate the cause of each:



single absence;



prolonged absence;



absence of more than two (2) days duration; or



repeated unexplained absence and tardiness.

School Attendance Officer

The District Administrator shall designate an administrator at each school to be the School Attendance Officer. The School Attendance Officer shall perform any duties and responsibilities s/he is required to perform by State law, this policy, and any administrative guidelines issued by the school. The duties of the School Attendance Officer shall include, but not be limited to, the following.



Determining daily from attendance reports submitted by teachers which students enrolled in the school are absent from school and whether the absence is excused.



Submitting to the District Administrator, on or before August 1st of each year, a report of the number of students enrolled in the school who were absent in the previous year and whether the absences were excused. The District Administrator shall then submit this information to the State Superintendent.



Providing student attendance information to individuals and agencies for purposes authorized by State law and the Board's Policy 8330 - Student Records.

Excused Absences

As required under State law, a student shall be excused from school for the following reasons:



Physical or Mental Condition


The student is temporarily not in proper physical or mental condition to attend a school program.



Obtaining Religious Instruction


To enable the student to obtain religious instruction outside the school during the required school period (see Policy 5223 - Absences for Religious Instruction).



Permission of Parent


The student has been excused by his/her parent before the absence for any or no reason. A student may not be excused for more than ten (10) days per school year under this paragraph and must complete any course work missed during the absence. Examples of reasons for being absent that should be counted under this paragraph include, but are not limited to, the following:



professional and other necessary appointments (e.g., medical, dental, and legal) that cannot be scheduled outside of the school day



to attend a funeral



legal proceedings that require the student's presence



college visits



job fairs






Religious Holiday


For observance of a religious holiday consistent with the student's creed or belief.



Suspension or Expulsion


The student has been suspended or expelled.



Program or Curriculum Modification


The Board has excused the student from regular school attendance to participate in a program or curriculum modification leading to high school graduation or a high school equivalency diploma as provided by State law.



High School Equivalency Secured Facilities


The Board has excused a student from regular school attendance to participate in a program leading to a high school equivalency diploma in a secured correctional facility, a secured child caring institution, a secure detention facility, or a juvenile portion of a county jail, and the student and his/her parent agrees that the student will continue to participate in such a program.



Child at Risk


The student is a "child at risk" as defined under State law and is participating in a program at a technical college on either a part-time or full-time basis leading to high school graduation, as provided under State law.

A student may be excused from school, as determined by the School Attendance Officer or his/her designee, for the following reasons:





Quarantine of the student's home by a public health officer.



Illness of an Immediate Family Member


The illness of an immediate family member.





An emergency that requires the student to be absent because of familial responsibilities or other appropriate reasons.

Unexcused Absences

Unexcused absences demonstrate a deliberate disregard for the educational program and are considered a serious matter. The District Administrator shall develop administrative guidelines to address unexcused absences.

The Board authorizes, but does not encourage the District Administrator, to suspend a student from a particular class or from school if sincere efforts by the staff and parents cannot rectify the pattern of absence. In keeping with its philosophy, the Board supports efforts to provide for out-of-school alternative educational opportunities for truant students rather than to heighten the effects of absence through suspension.

Late Arrival and Early Dismissal

It is necessary that a student be in attendance throughout the school day in order to benefit fully from the educational program of the District.

The Board recognizes, however, that from time-to-time compelling circumstances require that a student be late to school or dismissed before the end of the school day.

As agent responsible for the education of the children of this District, the Board shall require that the school be notified in advance of such absences by written or personal request of the student's parent, who shall state the reason for the tardiness or early dismissal. Justifiable reasons shall be determined by the principal.

No student who has a medical disability which may be incapacitating may be released without a person to accompany him/her.

No student shall be released to anyone who is not authorized such custody by the parents.

Truancy Plan

The Board will issue a Truancy Plan based upon the recommendations of the County Truancy Committee convened under State law, the Board's policies and procedures, and applicable provisions of State law. The Board will review and, if appropriate, revise the Truancy Plan at least once every two (2) years.

The Truancy Plan will include, at a minimum, the following:



procedures to be followed for notifying the parents of the unexcused absences of a student who is truant or a habitual truant and for meeting and conferring with such parents



plans and procedures for identifying truant children of all ages and returning them to school, including the identity of school personnel to whom a truant child shall be returned



methods to increase and maintain public awareness of and involvement in responding to truancy within the school district



a provision addressing the immediate response to be made by school personnel when a truant child is returned to school



the types of truancy cases to be referred to the District Attorney and the time periods within which the District Attorney will respond to and take action on the referrals



plans and procedures to coordinate the responses to the problems of habitual truants, as defined under Sec. 118.16(1)(a), Wis. Stats., with public and private social services agencies



methods to involve the truant child's parent in dealing with and solving the child's truancy problem

A student will be considered truant if s/he is absent part or all of one (1) or more days from school during which the School Attendance Officer, principal, or a teacher has not been notified of the legal cause of such absence by the parent of the absent student. A student who is absent intermittently for the purpose of defeating the intent of the Wisconsin Compulsory Attendance Statute Sec. 118.15, Wis. Stats., will also be considered truant.

A student will be considered a habitual truant if s/he is absent from school without an acceptable excuse for part or all of five (5) or more days on which school is held during a school semester.

Notice of Truancy

The School Attendance Officer shall notify a truant student's parent of the student's truancy and direct the parent to return the student to school no later than the next day on which school is in session or to provide an excuse for the absence. The notice under this paragraph shall be given before the end of the second school day after receiving a report of an unexcused absence. Notice shall be made by personal contact or telephone call, if possible, and a written record of this notice shall be kept. In the event that an attempt is made to contact the parent by personal contact or telephone call and the parent is not reached, notice may be provided by 1st class mail. If such notice is not effective, notice shall be made by mail. This notice must be given every time a student is truant until the student becomes a habitual truant.

Notice of Habitual Truancy

When a student initially becomes a habitual truant, the School Attendance Officer shall provide a notice to the student's parent, by registered or certified mail, or by 1st class mail, which contains the following:



a statement of the parent's responsibility under State law to cause the student to attend school regularly



a statement that the parent or student may request program or curriculum modifications for the student under State law and that the student may be eligible for enrollment in a program for children at risk



a request that the parent meet with the appropriate school personnel to discuss the student's truancy


The notice shall include the name of the school personnel with whom the parent should meet, a date, time, and place for the meeting and the name, address, and telephone number of a person to contact to arrange a different date, time, or place. The date for the meeting shall be within five (5) school days after the date that the notice is sent, except that with the consent of the student's parent the date for the meeting may be extended for an additional five (5) school days.



a statement of the penalties, under State law or local ordinances that may be imposed on the parent if s/he fails to cause the child to attend school regularly as required by State law

The School Attendance Officer will also continue to notify the parent of a habitual truant's subsequent unexcused absences.

Referral to the District Attorney

Truancy cases will be referred to the District Attorney as provided in the County Truancy Committee Plan. The School Attendance Officer will ensure that appropriate school personnel have done the following before any case is referred to the District Attorney:



met with the student's parent to discuss the student's truancy or attempted to meet with the student's parent and received no response or were refused



provided an opportunity for educational counseling to the student to determine whether a change in the student's curriculum would resolve the student's truancy and have curriculum modifications under State law



evaluated the student to determine whether learning problems may be a cause of the student's truancy and, if so, have taken steps to overcome the learning problems, except that the student need not be evaluated if tests administered to the student within the previous year indicate that the student is performing at his/her grade level



conducted an evaluation to determine whether social problems may be a cause of the student's truancy and, if so, have taken appropriate action or made appropriate referrals

Note that paragraph A. is not required if the meeting between school personnel, the student, and the student's parent, which was requested in the Notice of Habitual Truancy to the parent, did not occur within ten (10) school days after the Notice was sent. Paragraphs B., C., and D. are not required if appropriate school personnel were unable to carry out the activity due to the student's absences from school.

Make-up Course Work and Examinations

Students who are absent from school, whether the absence was excused or unexcused, shall be permitted to make-up course work and examinations missed during the absence when they return to school. It is the student's responsibility to contact his/her teachers to determine what course work and examinations must be made-up. Teachers shall have the discretion to assign substitute course work and examinations. Teachers shall also have the discretion to specify where and when examinations and course work shall be completed, including outside regular school hours. The time for completing the work shall be commensurate with the length of the absence, unless extended by the principal based upon extenuating circumstances.

115, 118.15, 118.125(2), 118.153, 118.16, 118.162, Wis. Stats.

Revised 10/12/16

© Neola 2016