As delineated in the Somerset Academy Student-Parent Handbook, all absences must be reported to the Attendance Clerk within 48 hours of the absence in order for it to be excused. After 3 consecutive absences, only a physician's note will be accepted to excuse the absences.
All letters must be submitted to the Main Office or emailed to the:
After the 48 hour window has elapsed, absences will not be excused.
GENERAL ATTENDANCE PROCEDURES
COMPULSORY SCHOOL ATTENDANCE
1. All children who have attained the age of six years or who will have attained the age of six years by February 1 of any school year, or who are older than six years of age but who have not yet attained the age of 16 years or age specified by state statute, whichever is older, except as hereinafter provided, are required to attend school regularly during the entire 180-day school term.
2. A student who attains the age of 16 years during the school year is not subject to compulsory school attendance beyond the date upon which he or she attains that age if the student files a formal declaration of intent to terminate school enrollment with the School Board. The declaration must acknowledge that terminating school enrollment is
likely to reduce the student's earning potential and must be signed by the child
and parent. A student who attains the age of 18 years during the school year is
not subject to the legal sanctions for compulsory school attendance.
3. Students under 16 years of age may not be permanently withdrawn from school for any
reason unless expelled through Board action or covered by an exemption allowed by Florida Statute.
4. Compulsory school attendance requirements may be met by attendance in a home education program, Although 180 days is the standard requirement for compulsory school attendance; Florida Statutes requires a longer term for Department of Juvenile Justice Programs. For students in those programs, the compulsory school attendance requirement is consistent with state law and regulations.
PATTERNS OF NON-ATTENDANCE
1. Non-attendance for instructional activities
is established by tardiness, early-sign-outs, or absences for all or any part
of the day. The maximum number of days that a student may be absent without
acceptable documentation is 5 in a marking period. After 6 days of absences,
excused or unexcused, students will be reported, as required by law, to the
district for an intervention as they are exhibiting a pattern of
2. A student who has had at least five unexcused absences, or absences for which the reasons are unknown, within a calendar month, or 10 unexcused absences, or absences for which the reasons are unknown within a 90-calendar-day period, may be exhibiting a pattern of non-attendance.
3. Unless acceptable documentation is available, an accumulation of daily
absences (excused or unexcused) by tardiness, or early sign-outs that equals
5 days (30 hours) in a marking period or 10 days (60 hours) within two
marking periods may establish a pattern of non-attendance.
4. Habitual truant means a student has 15 unexcused absences within 90 calendar days with or without the knowledge or justifiable consent of the child's parent or legal
guardian, is subject to compulsory school attendance at Somerset Academy
DRIVING PRIVILEGES AND ATTENDANCE
Florida Statute 322.091 requires school districts to report to the Division of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) the names, dates of birth, sex and social security numbers of students ages 14-18 who accumulate 15 unexcused absences in any consecutive 90 calendar day period. This will result in a suspension of a license for those students who possess one, or a postponement of the ability to acquire a driver’s license for those students without a current permit or license. Districts are also required to hold hardship hearings if requested by a student whose license has been suspended.
CONSEQUENCES RELATED TO TRUANCY
1. A child who is found to be truant may be taken to the Juvenile Assessment Center or other locations that are established by the school district to receive students who are absent from school. It is the responsibility of the Law Enforcement Officer to call the school to determine if the child is legitimately out of school.
2. Students 14-18 years of age who have 15 unexcused absences within 90 calendar days and have a driver's license will have their driver's license suspended by the Division of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles or will not be issued a license if they apply for one.
STUDENT ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE TIMES
According to Florida state law, the school is responsible for students only 30 minutes prior to and 30 minutes after a school activity. Due to these supervision restrictions, we urge all students to ARRIVE ON SCHOOL CAMPUS AFTER 7:00A.M. AND TO BE OFF CAMPUS BY 3:00 PM (1:15 PM during early release days), unless the student is attending a school-sponsored activity. Students who stay after school must be under the strict supervision of a faculty or staff member and must remain in their designated areas for tutoring, make-up work, practices, and or rehearsals.
Students must be in school unless the absence has been permitted or excused for one of the reasons listed below.
1. Illness of student.
2. Illness of an immediate family member.
3. Death in the family.
4. Religious holidays of the student's own faith.
5. Required court appearance or subpoena by a law enforcement agency.
6. Scheduled medical or dental appointment.
Please be advised that for an excusable absence Somerset Academy requires that all parents must report the absence within 2 school days following the absence. The absence will not be overturned after the two day grace period. Any absence is unexcused until the school receives a written notice to excuse the absence from the parent or provide documentation of illness from a physician or public health unit. A parent may only excuse five absences per semester.
After five absences, proper documentation is required by a physician, or court appointed official. After five absences the student will go in front of the school’s attendance committee for review. Only the attendance committee is authorized to offer exceptions to the current policies and procedures. Six unexcused absences in a high school class will result in failing the semester for all classes that have six absences.
High school students will not be allowed to make up any work for unexcused absences. Students will have two days after an excused absence to complete all work for their instructors. Any work not completed on time will be considered a zero. Only the school’s attendance committee can determine exceptions and grant extensions.
1. For 1st period only, for every five unexcused absences students will receive a referral from their first period teacher. The number of unexcused absences will still reset at the beginning of every quarter.
2. Students without a completed Certificate of Immunization indicating compliance with the current required schedule of immunizations will not be allowed to attend classes until this document is provided or a waiver is obtained. Absences due to non-compliance with immunization requirements shall be considered unexcused.
3. For students transferring into Broward County, including but not limited to foster care students, or a homeless student, a temporary 30 day waiver of both health examination documents and certificates of immunization may be granted.
4. Students who have been externally suspended may be offered an opportunity to participate in an alternative to suspension program. If they do not attend, the assigned days, the absences will be considered suspensions.
(Tardiness is defined as a student not being in the classroom when the class is scheduled to begin.)
1. Parents must follow the same process to excuse a tardy as they do to excuse an absence.
2. Excessive tardiness will be addressed on a case-by-case basis to determine if a pattern of non- attendance exists. Non-attendance for instructional activities is established by
tardiness, early-sign-outs, or absences for all or any part of the day. Four tardies in any class, during any portion of the day, throughout the semester will result in one unexcused absence.
3. Tardies and absences will be reset at the beginning of each Semester.
4. Tardiness to any class without documentation may be considered unexcused.
5. Habitual tardiness is defined as being tardy 5 times within a marking period.
6. The Attendance Committee has the discretion to excuse tardiness for extenuating
UNEXCUSED TARDY POLICY TO SCHOOL
1. First...... Warning
3. Third...... Warning
4. Fourth …...Warning: email notification to the parent
5. Fifth………. Warning: parent phone call
6. Sixth……… Referral to Disciplinarian: 1 hour detention in Le Cafe
7. Seventh…. Referral to Disciplinarian: 2 hour detention in Le Cafe
8. Eighth..... Saturday school from the hours of 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
* Note: Class tardiness is subject to our Lock Out policy. Students will be locked out from a class and subsequently marked tardy. Students have a period of no longer than 10 minutes to report to class after an approved attendance station has issued an entry pass to present to teacher for admission to the class. Students who do not report on time, within the 10 minute time period, will automatically receive an after school detention, for skipping class, to be served on the next available Thursday from 2:45 – 3:45 PM.
1. No students shall be released within the final 60 minutes of the school day unless the Administration determines it is an emergency. Early sign outs not allowed after 2:00 pm on regular days and 11:30 am on early release days.
2. Excessive early sign-outs will be addressed on a case-by-case basis to determine if there is a pattern of non-attendance. Non-attendance for instructional activities is established by tardiness, early-sign-outs, or absences for all or any part of the day. Only the attendance committee can reverse decisions made based on early sign outs.
3. Unless excused under the provisions of this policy, accumulated early sign-outs will be recorded as unexcused absences.
STUDENT’S RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES RULES
1. Students have a responsibility to ask their parents to notify the
school when they are absent, yet upon returning to school, the student must
provide an excusable letter from the parent.
2. Students have a responsibility
to ask teachers for, and to complete, make-up assignments. Two days (not
including the day of return) are allowed for each day of absence. Previously
assigned work is due the day of return, no exceptions.
3. Students must maintain current assignments and have the responsibility to turn in their daily work while serving internal suspension.
4. Students who are married, are parents, or are expectant parents have the right to remain in the regular school program or attend a special center program tailored to their specific needs.
PARENTS’ RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
1. Parents have a right to be informed
of the attendance responsibilities and consequences for truancy for both
parents and students as described in the Code of Student Conduct.
2. Each parent of a child of compulsory school attendance age is responsible for the child's school attendance as required by law.
3. Parents must report their child's absence in accordance to our policies.
4. Parents have the right to request a hearing if they refuse to participate in the intervention developed by the child study team because they believe that the intervention is unnecessary or inappropriate.
5. The parents of a student expected to miss at least 15 consecutive school days due to illness, medical condition, or social/emotional reasons, or who would miss excessive days intermittently throughout the school year for the same reasons, and could benefit from instruction should notify the school and request a copy of the Hospital/Homebound referral packet.
6. Parents have a right to be notified if their child misses school and the parents have not reported the absence to the school.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. How do I get my child’s absence excused?
Parents send a note to the school stating the reason that caused or will cause the student’s absence.
2. Is there a deadline to get absences excused? Parents have 2 days (48 hours) in which to report an absence.
3. What are the acceptable reasons for an excused absence?
Students must be in school unless the absence has been permitted or excused for one of the reasons listed below (F.S. 1003.24(4), 1003.26)
• Illness of student.
• Illness of an immediate family member.
• Death in the family.
• Religious holidays of the student’s own faith.
• Required court appearance or subpoena.
• Special event. Examples of special events include important public functions, conferences, state/national
• competitions, as well as exceptional cases of family need. The student must get permission from the
• principal/designee at least five days ahead of time.
• Scheduled medical or dental appointment.
• Students having, or suspected of having, a communicable disease.
4. What should I do if the school records my child’s absence as unexcused when it was an excused
absence? Immediately contact the school and provide documentation with a request to have the absence
corrected. Follow up with the school administrator if necessary.
5. Can my child make up work for any absences?
Make-up work shall be accepted for full credit and grade for excused and unexcused absences. All make-up work must be submitted within two days upon return to the missed class, not including the day of return, for each day of an absence. When assignments and appropriate instruction are provided prior to the absence, make-up work (including major projects) is due on the day of return to the missed class. Under extenuating circumstances and at teacher’s discretion, additional time may be allowed.
6. How much time does my child have to submit make‐up work?
Students are allowed two days from the date of return, to complete and submit the make‐up work.However, work missed due to a suspension is due on the first back in school after the suspension
7. Will the teachers provide my child with the make‐up work?
Teachers will have the make‐up work available but it is the student and family’s responsibility to get the make‐up work. Options include accessing the work on‐line, picking up the work at school or by getting notes and assignments from classmates.