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Student Attendance Office

Attendance Details & Procedures

elementary, middle and high school

We believe good school attendance is imperative to a child’s success in school.  

definitions

Truancy - An absence for the entire day, a major portion of the day, or the major portion of any class activity during the school day, for which the student is scheduled (without an excuse).

Early Dismissal - Missing a portion of the school day or portion of any class or activity during the school day for which the student is scheduled. A student must attend 3 hours and 16 minutes to be counted present for the day.

Tardiness - Late arrival to school.

Abbreviated Day - Dismissal time for abbreviated days is 11:40 a.m. (middle and high school) and 12:15 p.m. (elementary school). Refer to the school calendar at www.k12k.com for a listing of abbreviated days.

arrival to school

Students are to remain on campus upon arrival. Start and end times are as follows:

  • Pre-K: 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Elementary Schools: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • Middle Schools: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.
  • High School: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m. (Block) or 7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. (Singleton)

late arrival to school

Students who arrive to class after the tardy bell rings must obtain a tardy form from the office before going to the classroom. Being tardy for school can become a habit and must be avoided. Students who leave early or miss a portion of the school day will be recorded as early dismissal.
 
All tardiness or early dismissals are considered unexcused unless documented with a note from a medical provider or approved by the appropriate school administrator.   
 
  • All medical notes from a health care provider must be faxed or emailed to your child(ren)’s school to ensure they are received in a timely manner. The school’s front office can provide the fax number.
  • The principal is responsible for classifying student absences as excused or unexcused. While this duty may routinely be delegated to others, the principal has the final determination.

early dismissal or leaving school

No child will be permitted to leave the school premises during the day without the written permission of the parent or guardian and/or in the custody of said person. Under no circumstances will a child be released to unidentified or unauthorized persons. Please do not depend on telephone calls to have children dismissed.* Positive identification cannot be made by phone. The student must be signed out in the school office.

*Students living at home, and who are at least 18 years of age, must have a parent/guardian call the office in order to check them out of school if written permission has not been provided.

absences

Students will be allowed to submit three (3) parental excuses per semester.  All documentation regarding absences, whether a parent or medical excuse, it must be submitted upon the student’s return to school.

  • All medical notes from a health care provider must be faxed to your child(ren)’s school to ensure they are received in a timely manner. The school’s front office can provide the fax number.
  • The principal is responsible for classifying student absences as excused or unexcused. While this duty may routinely be delegated to others, the principal has the final determination.
  • Students who have more than nine (9) unexcused absences to any one class will not be permitted to participate in Prom or Graduation. They may also be eliminated from participating in certain field trips or extracurricular events.

partial absences, tardiness and early dismissals

Any student who accumulates more than 35 hours absent unexcused due to signing in late or leaving early will be referred to the Coordinator of Attendance. These students will be considered to be in violation of the Attendance Law and may face all potential sanctions listed in the Student Handbook.
 

exceptions and/or special situations

Students who miss classes to participate in school functions/field trips approved by the principal or Superintendent of Schools will be recorded as “field trip”. Activities considered school functions must be school-planned, school-directed and teacher-supervised. Students receiving homebound services are exempt from the provisions of this policy for the duration of the placement.
 
College Visit Days:
  • High school juniors and seniors may choose to miss two days per year in order to visit college campuses. College visits to Northeast State Technical Community College, Kingsport Center for Higher Education or the Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing will be excused in ½ day increments unless otherwise noted on the admit slip issued by the higher education facility.
  • These absences count toward the total number of absences in any one term. Students are strongly encouraged to utilize fall and spring breaks for college visits. 
 
Make-Up Work:
  • Work missed during an absence, whether excused or unexcused, may be made up in a timely manner and within a time frame established by the teacher. Teachers will operate within guidelines set by the principal. The guidelines for make-up work, established by the principal, may vary depending on the type of absence.
  • Elementary School: When a student is absent from school and make-up work is desired, requests should be made to the school secretary by 8:15 a.m. The assignments should be picked at the school office between 3:15 p.m. and 4 p.m. on the same day. Graded work will be made up after the student returns to school.
  •  Middle School: The counseling office will accept requests to gather homework/assignments for absent students. Please follow these guidelines:
    • Only ask for homework/assignments if the student will be absent for two or more days.
    • Phone in your request before 9 a.m. and wait until 2:45 p.m. to pick up.
    • Bring your child's locker number and combination so that you will be able to retrieve books and other materials.
  • High School: Students are responsible for arranging make-up work with teachers. All make-up work from a grading period must be made up within one week of the end of that grading period. Additional time for extenuating medical issues can be arranged with the individual teacher.
  • Please contact the counseling office if the student will miss three or more excused days of school in a row. It typically takes a day to coordinate the collection of assignments­­­­ from 4-6 different high school teachers.
  • E-mail addresses for teachers may be accessed via the school website www.k12k.com.

communications

It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to notify the school by 9 a.m. when a student is absent and provide the school with an explanation for the absence. This will be used by the principal in determining whether or not the absence is excused. Parents can notify the school regarding their child’s absence using one of the following methods: e-mail the attendance contact person; call; OR send a written excuse.
 
State law [TCA 49-6-3007(e)(2)] requires that the school begin sending notification to the parent/guardian when a student reaches three (3) unexcused absences. Parents will continue to receive notification letters each time a student accumulates five (5) unexcused absences. After five (5) days of unexcused absence, a referral will be made to the Coordinator of Attendance who will determine the most appropriate course of action to address the unexcused absences. 
 
The Coordinator of Attendance will be informed of all attendance referrals needing attention. At the time of referral, the Coordinator will make a determination as to what action will be taken. Possible actions are listed below.
 
Possible Interventions and/or Legal Sanctions
  • Conference with a school staff member to complete an attendance improvement plan
  • Conference with the Coordinator of Attendance to complete an attendance assessment
  • Referral for in-home services or counseling
  • Referral to the Family Crisis Intervention Program
  • A petition can be filed against middle and high school students for truancy. This will result in the student and parent having to appear in the Sullivan County Juvenile Court. As a result, students may be placed on probation, placed in a residential setting or removed from the parent’s custody and placed in foster care. Parents will be made a party to the case and may be required to complete a parenting program. In addition, parents may be fined $50 or ordered to complete five (5) hours of community service for every unexcused absence.
  • A petition can be filed against the parents for dependency and neglect based on excessive unexcused absences. The use of this petition is determined on a case by case basis.
  • Parents may be charged with Educational Neglect in the General Sessions Court which is a class C misdemeanor. Each unexcused absence constitutes a separate offense and could carry up to thirty (30) days in jail.
  • Students who are 15 years of age and older can have their driver’s license or the privilege to apply for a license suspended if they accumulate an excessive amount of unexcused absences. This includes out of school suspension days.

administration

The principal is responsible for administering this policy at his/her school. The Coordinator of Attendance will provide assistance as needed. Assistance from community agencies will be requested as needed. The Coordinator of Attendance is responsible for the overall administration of this policy and for maintaining attendance records required by the State.

APPEALS

Any student or parent/guardian may appeal the attendance decision or action of a principal to the Superintendent of Schools. Any student or parent/guardian may appeal a decision of the Superintendent of Schools to the Board of Education. The appeal and reason for it shall be in writing. The Board shall consider the appeal at its next regular or called meeting after giving due notice to the appellant.
 

High School Attendance Procedures Only

arrival to school

High school students should not be on campus prior to 7 a.m. Students can be in the following parts of the campus between 7 a.m. and 7:30 a.m.: Cafeteria, Library, Math Pod, Science Pod, Social Studies Pod and English Pod. Students are not to be in any other part of the building prior to 7:30 a.m. Students are to remain on campus upon arrival.

late arrival to school

All high school students arriving late to school must sign-in through the main office. A student must sign-in even if they arrive during class change or lunches. Students arriving more than ten (10) minutes late for class will not be admitted without an admit slip from the front office.
 
All tardiness or early dismissals are considered unexcused unless documented with a note from a medical provider or approved by the appropriate school administrator.
  • All medical notes from a health care provider must be faxed or emailed to your child(ren)’s school to ensure they are received in a timely manner. The school’s front office can provide the fax number.
  • The principal is responsible for classifying student absences as excused or unexcused. While this duty may routinely be delegated to others, the principal has the final determination.

early dismissal from school

Any high school student who has to leave campus must have a note from a parent/guardian stating the reason for dismissal and where the parent can be contacted. The school will make every attempt to verify notes requesting early dismissal or late arrival. Students must bring their note to the office before the beginning of the school day. Doing so ensures ample time for the staff to verify the request. Please do not depend on telephone calls to have students dismissed.*
 
Upon verification, the student will be issued an “early dismissal form” which will release the student from class at the assigned time. At that point they may sign out immediately through the office and depart. When a student reports to sign out without an “early dismissal form” a delay will occur while the staff takes steps to verify the request. All students leaving school must sign out in the front office. Failure to follow these procedures will result in appropriate disciplinary action.
 
*Students living at home, and who are at least 18 years of age, must have a parent/guardian call the office in order to check them out of school if written permission has not been provided.

late pick-up and/or loitering

There is to be no loitering in the high school parking lots, the activities lobby, ramps or the dome before or after school. Students on campus after 3:15 p.m. must be under the direct supervision of a teacher, coach or administrator.

perfect attendance

Perfect Attendance means no time missed during the school day including tardiness to school and time away from school during the school day. Pre-approved college days for seniors do not count against perfect attendance. For elementary and middle school perfect attendance procedures, please contact your school office. Please note that our end-of-year attendance awards are based on this criterion.

tardiness consequences

  • 3 Tardies - 1 Lunch Detention**
  • 6 Tardies -   3 Lunch Detention
  • 9 Tardies - 1 day ISS (In-School Suspension)
  • 12 Tardies - 2 days ISS
  • 15 Tardies - More serious consequences including additional ISS, OSS (Out of School Suspension), truancy referral, or referral for possible alternative placement.
 

** Lunch Detention refers to complete loss of Tribe Time privileges

Students who have more than nine (9) unexcused absences to any one class will not be permitted to participate in Prom or Graduation. They may also be eliminated from participating in certain field trips or extracurricular events.

driver's license laws

Please go to the Main Office at Dobyns-Bennett to obtain a Certification of Compulsory Attendance. Students under the age of eighteen (18) may lose their driving privileges if they are:
  • Convicted of any drug or alcohol offense
  • Convicted of a weapons violation
  • Failing to make satisfactory academic progress in school, which is defined as failing two (2) or more subjects
  • Having ten (10) or more consecutive unexcused absences or more than fifteen (15) total unexcused absences during a semester. This includes suspension days
    • Students who are fifteen (15) years of age and older can have their driver's license or the privilege to apply for a license suspended if they accumulate ten (10) or more consecutive unexcused absences or more than fifteen (15) total unexcused absences during a semester. This includes out of school suspension days. 

If a student is in violation of the law due to their attendance or grades, the attendance supervisor is required to contact the Department of Safety.

 

Contact Us!
 
Kingsport City Schools
Student Attendance Office
400 Clinchfield Street, Ste. 200
Kingsport, TN 37660
 
Ph: (423) 378.8594
Fax: (423) 378.2120