Every day in school counts
A student who misses too much
school runs the risk of failing or dropping out. And when that happens,
the student cuts off his or her chances to graduate and make it in
That’s why the City School District of Albany has
stepped up its efforts to get students to school and keep them engaged.
The district partners with social-services providers,
mental-health professionals, law enforcement agencies, Family Court and
the City of Albany’s Truancy Abatement Program. Together, we work with
families when attendance issue. We also provide meaningful incentives
for good attendance and consequences for poor attendance.
Missing school hurts kids
The future is bleaker for students who miss too much
school. And frequent absences without a
valid reason are known as truancy.
Truancy is an early warning sign for a student headed
toward school failure and dropping out. Truant students also are at
greater risk of drug and alcohol abuse, teen pregnancy and delinquency.
In the City School District of Albany, truant
Being absent because of sickness for more than
five days without a note from the doctor
Missing classes without a valid excuse
Missing whole days of school without a valid
Frequently being late for school
Late or absent: the rules
The district follows state law, which requires a
parent or guardian to give the school a written excuse for every absence
or late arrival. The excuse must be signed and dated by a child’s parent
or legal guardian, and include the dates and reasons for the absence or
lateness. (Click here to read the
full district attendance policy.)
When is a child’s absence or late
Student illness or family illness or death
Unsafe travel conditions
Required court appearances
Participation in a school-sponsored activity
Approved college visits
Approved work programs
Absences and late arrivals are tracked every day in
every school. In elementary schools, teachers and/or staff people take
attendance once a day. At Albany High School and in middle school,
attendance is taken every period. Each school has a committee
responsible for monitoring overall attendance; that committee also is
responsible for identifying specific students who frequently miss or are
late to school.
If a school identifies a student with an attendance
problem, the school may use one of the following strategies to address
Loss of extracurricular privileges
Mandatory school meeting with and parent and/or guardian
Alternative education placement
District attendance officer referral
Person in Need of Supervision (PINS) report filed
Child Protective Services report filed against
parents/guardian for educational neglect
Family court referral
Helping your child with attendance
Parents can help their kids make
the right choices about school. Here’s how.
Keep open the lines of communication between you
and your child’s principal or teacher. For middle and high school
students, keep in touch with your child’s guidance counselor.
Be sure your child is at school on time every
day. Set a routine for getting homework done.
Limit late-night activities. Have a regular,
reasonable bed time and stick to it on weeknights.
Don’t allow other activities to take priority over
school and school work.
Make sure your child knows that every day in
school counts. Make education a priority by emphasizing that doing
well in school and graduating gives them a better chance of getting
what they want in life.
Increase your child’s involvement in school by
having him or her participate in after-school clubs, sports or both.
To find out what’s available, call your child’s school.
Getting extra help
Despite your best efforts, your child may refuse to go to school or stay
in school. When that happens, the
district has an attendance team to help. Attendance
Brenda Shanahan, Michael Bernardi, and Tahaine Chavez, and they work
under the guidance of the Office of
Pupil Personnel Services.
For more information about the attendance policy or
to share concerns about your child, please contact the Office of Pupil
Personnel Services at 475-6130.