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Newport-Mesa USD |  BP  5113.1  Students

Chronic Absence And Truancy   

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The Board of Education believes that excessive student absenteeism and tardiness, whether caused by excused or unexcused absences, may be an early warning sign of poor academic achievement and may be an indicator of undesirable behaviors brought on by social, emotional, or environmental issues. The Board believes these issues may put students at risk. The Board desires to ensure that all students attend school in accordance with the state's compulsory education law and take full advantage of educational opportunities provided by the district.

(cf. 5113 - Absences and Excuses)

There shall be an established system to accurately track student attendance, including methods to identify students classified as chronic absentees and truants, as defined in law and administrative regulation, and to identify patterns of absence throughout the district.

The Superintendent or designee shall annually provide the Board with data on school attendance, chronic absence, and truancy rates for all district students, for each school, and for each numerically significant student subgroup as defined in Education Code 52052. Such data shall be disaggregated and used in the development of annual goals and specific actions for student attendance and engagement and for inclusion in the district's Local Control and Accountability Plan and other applicable school and district plans.

(cf. 0400 - Comprehensive Plans)

(cf. 0420 - School Plans/Site Councils)

(cf. 0450 - Comprehensive Safety Plan)

(cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan)

To encourage school attendance, the Superintendent or designee shall develop strategies that focus on prevention and intervention of attendance problems, which may include, but are not limited to, efforts to provide a safe and positive school environment, relevant and engaging learning experiences, school activities that help develop students' feelings of connectedness with the school, school-based health services, and incentives and rewards to recognize students who achieve excellent attendance or demonstrate significant improvement in attendance. The Superintendent or designee shall implement strategies that enable early outreach to students and families as soon as they show signs of poor attendance.

(cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)

(cf. 5126 - Awards for Achievement)

(cf. 5131 - Conduct)

(cf. 5137 - Positive School Climate)

(cf. 5141.6 - School Health Services)

(cf. 5145.3 - Nondiscrimination/Harassment)

The Superintendent or designee shall work with students, parents/guardians, school staff, and community agencies, as appropriate, to identify factors contributing to chronic absence and truancy. He/she may also collaborate with community agencies, including, but not limited to, child welfare services, law enforcement, courts, public health care agencies, other government agencies, and/or medical, mental health, and oral health care providers to ensure that alternative educational programs and nutrition, health care, and other support services are available for students and families and to intervene as necessary when students have serious attendance problems.

(cf. 1020 - Youth Services)

(cf. 5030 - Student Wellness)

(cf. 5146 - Married/Pregnant/Parenting Students)

(cf. 5147 - Dropout Prevention)

(cf. 6158 - Independent Study)

(cf. 6164.2 - Guidance/Counseling Services)

(cf. 6164.5 - Student Success Teams)

(cf. 6173 - Education for Homeless Children)

(cf. 6173.1 - Education for Foster Youth)

(cf. 6173.2 - Education of Children of Military Families)

(cf. 6175 - Migrant Education Program)

(cf. 6179 - Supplemental Instruction)

(cf. 6181 - Alternative Schools/Programs of Choice)

(cf. 6183 - Home and Hospital Instruction)

(cf. 6184 - Continuation Education)

(cf. 6185 - Community Day School)

Students who are identified as truants shall be subject to the interventions specified in law and administrative regulation.

A student's truancy, tardiness, or other absence from school shall not be the basis for his/her out-of-school suspension or expulsion. Alternative disciplinary strategies and positive reinforcement for attendance shall be used whenever possible.

(cf. 5144 - Discipline)

(cf. 5144.1 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)

The Superintendent or designee shall periodically report to the Board regarding the district's progress in improving student attendance rates for all students and for each numerically significant student population. Such information shall be used to evaluate the effectiveness of strategies implemented to reduce chronic absence and truancy and to make changes as needed. As appropriate, the Superintendent or designee shall engage school staff and community agency partners to engage them in program evaluation and improvement and in identification of how to best allocate available community resources.

The Board may submit a nomination to the County Superintendent of Schools for a person who will serve as district representative on the county SARB. (Education Code 48321)

In accordance with law and administrative regulation, habitual truants may be referred to the School Attendance Review Board (SARB).

School Attendance Review Board

The Board shall appoint members of the district's SARB, who may include, but are not be limited to, representatives of: Board of Education, the district, county probation department, county welfare department, county office of education, law enforcement agencies, community-based youth service centers, school guidance personnel, child welfare and attendance personnel, school or county health care personnel, school, county, or community mental health personnel, the county district attorney's office, and the county public defender's office. (Education Code 48321)

The district's SARB shall operate in accordance with Education Code 48320-48325 and procedures established by the Superintendent or designee.

Legal Reference:


1740 Employment of personnel to supervise attendance (county superintendent)

37223 Weekend classes

41601 Reports of average daily attendance

46000 Records (attendance)

46010-46014 Absences

46110-46119 Attendance in kindergarten and elementary schools

46140-46147 Attendance in junior high and high schools

48200-48208 Children ages 6-18 (compulsory full-time attendance)

48225.5 Work permits, entertainment and allied industries

48240-48246 Supervisors of attendance

48260-48273 Truants

48290-482967 Failure to comply; complaints against parents

48320-48325 School attendance review boards

48340-48341 Improvement of student attendance

48400-48403 Compulsory continuation education

48900 Suspension and expulsion

52052 Academic Performance Index; numerically significant student subgroups

60901 Chronic absence


54950-54963 The Ralph M. Brown Act


270.1 Chronic truancy; parent/guardian misdemeanor

272 Parent/guardian duty to supervise and control minor child; criminal liability for truancy

830.1 Peace officers


13202.7 Driving privileges; minors; suspension or delay for habitual truancy


256-258 Juvenile hearing officer

601-601.4 Habitually truant minors

11253.5 Compulsory school attendance


306 Explanation of absence

420-421 Record of verification of absence due to illness and other causes

15497.5 Local control and accountability plan template


L.A. v. Superior Court of San Diego county, (2012) 209 Cal. App. 4th 976

Management Resources:


Attendance Awareness Month, Fact Sheet, September 2014


Count Us In! Working Together to show that Every School Day Matters, 2014

The Power of Positive Connections: Reducing Chronic Absence Through PEOPLE: Priority Early Outreach for Positive Linkages and Engagement, 2014


School Attendance Review Board Handbook, 2015

School Attendance Improvement Handbook, 2000



Attendance Counts:

California Association of Supervisors of Child Welfare and Attendance:

California Department of Education:

California Health Kids Survey:

California School Climate, Health, and Learning Survey System:



adopted: September 11, 2018 Costa Mesa, California