Regular attendance is essential for academic success. The state laws of Illinois are very specific concerning the matter of pupil attendance in public schools. It is assumed that students will always be in school except for cases of illness or serious family crisis. The following provisions have been made to govern attendance policy:
If a student is absent or tardy to school, the parent or guardian should telephone the dean’s office the same day stating the reason for the student’s absence or tardiness (24 hour voice mail is available). The attendance office telephone number is:
Failure to contact the dean’s office by telephone on the day of non-attendance may result in an unexcused absence or tardy. The absence may also be considered truancy unless there is parental contact. In any case, parents are requested to call when they receive a truancy notice. At no time are students to leave the school campus while school is in session. No student may leave school before the regular day ends unless excused by the dean, scheduled for early release, or sent home by the health service. Any other early departures will be listed as truancy and will be treated as unexcused absences.
In order for an absence to be considered excused, the student’s parent/guardian must call the campus attendance telephone number to report the absence. Acceptable reasons for excused absences will include but may not be limited to:
- Death in the immediate family
- Family emergency
- Pre-arranged family vacation
- Pre-arranged college visits
- Prom-related absence
Unexcused absences/tardies will include, but may not be limited to:
- Habitual car trouble
- No transportation
- Court/traffic ticket
- No parent call on absence
- Ditch days
- Arriving tardy to the first period class without a proper pass
A student will be limited to a total of ten (10) absences (excused or unexcused) per semester. When parents notify the campus prior to or on the same day of the absence, the student will be counted as excused.
On the tenth absence there will be a review of the student’s status. Unless there are extenuating circumstances, when a student accumulates eleven (11) full day absences (excused or unexcused), the student may be either dropped from the attendance roll or transferred to another District program. School personnel will review the absences prior to the student being dropped or transferred to another program. Absences due to in-school suspensions, out-of-school suspensions and doctor or health care provider verified medical excuses for absences due to chronic illness will not be applied toward the 10-day absence count.
Medical documentation will be required to excuse extended absences of more than three (3) consecutive days or more than six (6) non-consecutive days per semester. The medical documentation must be submitted the day the student returns to school.
Parents are encouraged to keep track of their student’s absences. It is suggested that days out of school (excused or unexcused) are marked on a calendar at home. Teachers, deans, counselors and other school personnel will make every effort to keep parents informed of a student’s absences.
The District may deny enrollment to a student 17 years of age or older for one semester for failure to meet minimum academic or attendance standards, in accordance with applicable laws and State Board regulations.
Absences including excused, unexcused, and special absences will be part of the ten-day total absences per semester. Extenuating circumstances may be reviewed by school personnel.
Perfect Attendance -Seniors with one, two, or three years of perfect attendance will be recognized at the Senior Banquet at Central or the Awards Day Assembly at West. Seniors with four years of perfect attendance will receive special recognition at graduation.
Perfect attendance means no absences for a full year. There are no exceptions. Seniors may not take a “ditch day.” Such a day is not approved by the school board, and the absence is considered unexcused.
College Visitation Days - Juniors and seniors may use up to three (3) college visit days and must meet the following provisions:
- A parent phone call is necessary
- A college adviser or counselor must verify the visit in writing. College printed material will not be accepted. These rules apply to all colleges or universities except for Joliet Junior College. Students are allowed only 1/2 day to visit JJC and must follow the above steps.
Court Appearances - Family court visits to solve family problems or summonses to serve as a witness are generally excused. A summons for personal violations of the law will be judged on its individual merits to be excused or unexcused.
Family Vacation - A written request, approximately one week before the specified date of absence, and a parent telephone call are necessary. Failure to observe this rule will result in an unexcused absence.
Inclement Weather Procedures - When school must be closed due to an emergency, an announcement will be sent via the District emergency dialer system, radio/television stations through the Emergency Closing Center (www.emergencyclosings.com), and local radio stations WJOL (1340AM), WSSR (96.7FM), WCCQ (98.3FM), and WRXQ (100.7FM).Parents and students may assume that school is open unless they hear a closure announcement on the radio. Parents and students are requested to listen to the radio rather than telephone the school. To the extent practical, school closures will be posted on the District website: www.jths.org.
Medical and Dental Appointments - Medical and dental appointments should be limited to times when school is not in session. If it becomes necessary for a student to be absent for a medical or dental appointment, pre-arranged notice must be given to the dean. In such situations, the parent must call the dean before the day of the appointment. A student will not be excused to provide transportation for another student. All-day doctor/dentist appointments will be unexcused unless verified as necessary by the doctor or dentist.