Provisions for Georgia's "Compulsory Student Attendance Law"
Georgia law requires children between the ages of 6 and 16 to be enrolled in and attend school. However, if a child is under the age of 6 and has attended more than 20 days in a public school, he/she is subject to the compulsory attendance law (O.C.G.A. 20-2-150 (C)).
A student is considered truant if he/she misses more than five unexcused absences during the school year. Pursuant to O.C.G.A 20-2-690.1, a parent/guardian shall be held responsible for the child's failure to report to school. Potential consequences for parents and/or students include a referral to the District Attorney's office, misdemeanor charges with a fine of not less than $25.00 and not greater than $100.00 for each offense, imprisonment for up to 30 days, community service, or any combination of such penalties, at the discretion of the court having jurisdiction may be imposed. Each day's unexcused absence from school, after the initial five unexcused days, shall constitute a separate offense.
Upon return to school after an absence for any reason, the student must bring a written excuse from a parent/guardian or other acceptable documentation such as a doctor's excuse or court subpoena. Failure to bring this documentation will result in the absence being unexcused.Excused Absences and Early Dismissal
Students may be EXCUSED only for the following reasons with WRITTEN DOCUMENTATION:
- Sickness or doctor's appointment
- Governmental court order
- Death in family
- Observance of a religious holiday
- Attendance that could be hazardous to others
- Absences resulting from attendance at school approved programs, such as statewide testing , class meetings or other activities approved by the administration of the school
- Visiting with an active duty parent before deployment, or a parent on leave from active duty.
**Extended absences due to serious illness must be reported to the school. It is the responsibility of the parent or guardian to contact the guidance department to collect assignments missed while the student was away.
**If your child has been excessively absent or tardy due to personal illness, the school must have a written statement from his/her physician stating that he/she has a condition that requires extra attention and modifications.
Students who are tardy to school should report to the front office with an adult to be signed in. Documentation is required for excused tardies.
Incidents resulting in poor time management such as oversleeping, heavy traffic, or similar excuses deemed preventable by administration.
A tardy resulting from events beyond a student or parent's control such as an accident, road closure, power outage or other excuses deemed as such by administration.
Attendance referral process
|Offense||Action Taken/Required||Follow Up|
|After 3 unexcused absences/tardies||Call or email parent/guardian and Set up a parent conference||Document parent/guardian response|
|After 5 absences/tardies||Call parent/guardian and Report to Counselor||Counselor/Designee will send an Official Letter and Set up a parent conference|
|After 7 absences/tardies||Report to Counselor/Designee, who will submit a referral to Student Services at the Central Office||Referring Counselor/Designee will be notified of further action taken|
- Teachers/designee should contact parents (Absences and tardies do not have to be consecutive)
- Counselors/designees - When sending referral to Student Services, include the following documentation:
- Teacher attempts to contact parent
- Counselor/designee efforts to make contact with the parent
- Conference or teleconference notes
- Infinite Campus attendance and grades summary
- Continue to document and refer any absences/tardies, which may be necessary for future action by the Student Services department, CBRRT, and District Attorney's office.
- Student Services will complete all steps necessary as a pre-requisite to a CBRRT referral.