Attendance Policy


The following are the guidelines regarding attendance at Hot Springs High School.


1.       In accordance with state statute, a student attending Hot Springs High School will be allowed ten unexcused absences per semester.

2.       Parents need to continue to verify a student's absence by note the day the student returns to school.  If that is not possible, the absence must be verified withinthree school days of the student's return to school.  Parent verified absences will NOT be counted as an excused absence; however, these notes WILL be kept on file as documentation of “parent awareness” should a student need to appeal a credit lost due to excessive absences.   EXCUSED (allowable) days include:  doctor/medical note, school-sanctioned activity, religious observance, court appearance, court ordered absence, in-school intervention, out-of-school suspension, college visit, hazardous weather, and/or bereavement (immediate family).  These allowable excuses MUST have some type of formal written documentation that is turned into the office within 3 days of the return to school. School-sanctioned activities do not require that formal written documentation be turned in by the student. 

3.       In order for the student to make up the work for full credit, an absence must be documented as excused. In an effort to be sure that parents/guardians are informed of their student's status on a regular basis, the following procedures will be in place concerning attendance:


There will be an attempt to contact parents/guardian after every unexcused absence.  At three (3) days of un-excused absence a letter will be sent to the parent/guardian.  The absence will be addressed by teachers upon the return of the student.  The automatic phone dialer will make an attempt to contact a parent/guardian each day that a student is absent – it is the parents’ responsibility to assure that the school has updated and correct contact information on file.

At five (5) unexcused absences, a letter will be sent to the students’ parents/guardian informing them that the student has five unexcused absences and asking them to arrange a meeting with the school to set up a plan of remediation.  The parent will also be contacted by phone via the automatic dialer.  At seven (7) absences, another letter will be sent to the students’ parents/guardian.   At ten (10) unexcused absences, the parent/guardian will be notified in writing via certified mail, of the violation of the mandatory attendance law. Copies of the 7th and 10th letter will also be sent to Teen Court through JPPO and the DA’s office.  Parents/guardians are asked to make an appointment with the school to meet with their son/daughter to set up an attendance contract for them and discuss the appeal process to receive credit.


When the student violates the attendance contract the school administration will refer the student to the Superintendent or Assistant Superintendent for long term suspension if the student is over eighteen (18) years of age. 


TO REPEAT:  Notes from parents are not excused; however, they are important documentation should a student be involved in the appeal process to determine credit for a class with 10 or more unexcused absences.






A student shall not be given credit for attending a class unless the student is in attendance for at least 90 percent of the days the class is offered.  The maximum allowed UNEXCUSED days to be out of class is ten (10) days.  EXCUSED (allowable) days include:  doctor/medical note, school-sanctioned activity, religious observance, court appearance, court ordered absence, in-school intervention, out-of-school suspension, college visit, hazardous weather, and/or bereavement (immediate family).  These allowable excuses MUST have some type of formal written documentation that is turned into the office within 3 days of the return to school.  School-sanctioned activities do not require that FORMAL WRITTEN documentation be turned in by the student.


A student and the student’s parent/guardian shall be provided written notice from the school district prior to and at such time as a student’s attendance in any class drops below 90 percent of the days the class is offered during any grading period.


Prior notice shall consist of letter(s) from the school district to the parent/guardian upon the third, fifth and seventh absences during any grading period.  It is the parent/guardian’s responsibility to ensure that the school has correct and current contact information at all times.


The written notification shall include a notice to the parent of the need to schedule a parent/teacher conference to discuss available interventions that address the student’s attendance patterns and academic progress.


It shall be the responsibility of the parent/guardian to contact the school to schedule such a conference.


A translator shall be made available, at school district expense, at the conference, at the request of the parent/guardian.


Students who did not meet the 90 percent attendance requirement must submit appeal packets to their school’s administration.  Appeal(s) must be approved in order for the student to receive credit(s).


Appeal packets are available in the high school office. (The minimum attendance requirement does not impact the acceptance of credit awarded through alternative means, such as online courses, etc.)


Appeal packets must be submitted to the school administration not later than 10 school days following the date the school district mails end of semester report cards to students. (Parents/guardians are responsible to ensure that a current address is on file at the school.) The date that report cards are available is predetermined and posted on the school district’s web page. Seniors are required to submit an appeal packet at least five school days prior to the date of graduation.



             Once submitted, the appeal packet shall be considered complete and no changes will be accepted.

            The appeal packet must include:

·        A school district-approved credit appeal form with all requested information completed;

·        An official school attendance report.

·        An absence justification form with written explanation of all unexcused absences not justified on the school absence report, along with all available documentation.


Students who do not submit an appeal packet within the guidelines enumerated above shall not receive credit for any class with 10 or more unexcused absences at the end of each semester.


Three members of The Tiger Leadership Team (TLT) shall review each student appeal packet. The TLT includes administration and department chairs from each of the high school instructional departments.  The three members shall rotate as necessary; however, an administrator will chair every review team.


In making a determination on the awarding of credit, the review team shall determine if absences are justified. The review team may request the student and parent/guardian to appear before the team if there are questions concerning the appeal packet.


The review team finding for each class appealed shall be either: 1) the credit is awarded due to extenuating circumstances; or 2) the credit is not awarded.


Students shall receive notification of the attendance review team’s decision within three school days of the team’s meeting.


If a student is denied credit for a class by the review team, the student may file an appeal with the Superintendent or his/her designee.


Such appeal shall be filed within five school days of the receipt of the decision. The Superintendent or his/her designee shall hear the student’s appeal and shall either:

1)  Award credit based on the appeal; or

2)  Deny credit.

The decision of the Superintendent or his/her designee shall be final.


Any high school senior whose appeal for credit is denied by the review team must present his/her appeal packet to the Superintendent or his/her designee within five school days of the receipt of the decision.  A senior who has been denied credit by the review team will not be allowed to participate in graduation ceremonies if they do not have the required credits to graduate.








Make-Up Work

Make-up work shall be provided for any class in which a student has an excused absence unless otherwise determined by the building administrator and posted in the student handbook.  It is the responsibility of the student to pick up any make-up assignments permitted on the day he/she returns to class. There shall be one day allowed for make-up work for each day of absence. Make-up work can be allowed following an unexcused absence with the goal of providing the student an opportunity to keep up with the class and an incentive to attend school; however, this work will receive only 50% credit after the 10th unexcused absence, which is the consequence for excessive absences.



Tardiness is defined as the appearance of a student without a proper excuse after the scheduled time that a class begins. Because of the disruptive nature of tardiness and the detrimental effect upon the rights of the non-tardy students to uninterrupted learning, penalties shall be imposed for excessive tardiness.  These penalties may include, but are not limited to:  lunch detention, after school campus clean-up, not receiving full credit for work turned in late – see individual course syllabi regarding consequences for late work.

When the bell rings, students who are not in their classroom are considered tardy.  All students who are tardy must report to the office to receive a tardy slip in order to enter the classroom.  All tardies will be considered unexcused with the exception of students who have a written excuse from a parent, doctor, teacher or administrator.  On the third tardy students should expect a disciplinary consequence.


A student may be temporarily removed from school if involved in situations deemed serious enough to warrant such action (i.e. habitual truancy, fighting, injury of another, repeated office referrals, possession or use of illegal or dangerous items, or any action the administration determines to be detrimental to the well being of other students).  Any of the aforementioned conditions may result in suspension.  Suspension may be at home or in the In School Suspension (ISS) room. Suspensions are progressive. Parents will be involved in each disciplinary action that requires any form of out of school suspension or legal action.  A parent/guardian conference with school authorities may be required before the student can return to classes.

Students suspended for 3-10 days are afforded the opportunity to complete missed work while on suspension.  A suspended student will need to have a parent/guardian pick up their work in the office the day following their suspension.  This work is due, completed, on the first day that the student returns to school.  Make-up work may or may not be the same as what students who are in class are doing.  Work must be made up during the suspension, not after the student returns to school.

While serving an “out of school” suspension, a student may not:

·        Participate in or attend any school activities during the term of the suspension (this includes dances, games, etc.)

·        Visit the campus, or be on school property, unless invited to attend a conference with the administration.