The Halifax Regional School Board recognizes that regular student attendance and punctuality are essential to student achievement and is committed to the full implementation of the Nova Scotia Education Act which defines student attendance as a responsibility that is shared among parents/guardians, students, teachers, principals and the school board.
Students are responsible for:
- Attending school and arriving punctually;
- Abiding by the Board’s attendance pilot policy;
- Participating fully in learning opportunities;
- Completing all work missed during excused and unexcused absences.
Parents and guardians are responsible for:
- Ensuring that their children attend school and arrive punctually every school day;
- Contacting the school through a phone call in the event that their child is absent or late;
- Communicating with their children about the importance of daily attendance and punctuality and their effect on learning and achievement;
- Informing school administrators of any special circumstances that may have an effect on their child’s attendance.
HIGH SCHOOL CREDIT ATTENDANCE PILOT:
Millwood High School has been selected to implement the new High School Credit Attendance pilot beginning September 2011. High School students may now lose eligibility to be granted a credit for a course they are not present in class for at least 80% of the course.
The following procedures will be in place to monitor the minimum attendance standard that must be maintained in order to receive an academic credit.
- If a student accumulates 5 absences the teacher will contact the parents/guardians. Teacher contact with the parents/guardians may take the form of a phone call, phone message or a letter mailed to the home. Teachers will document this communication in SIS for further reference if required.
- If a student accumulates 8 absences the teacher will directly contact parent/guardian by means of a phone call. Again, this communication will be documented by the teacher in SIS.
- If a student accumulates 10 absences there will be a meeting with the parents/guardians, or an adult advocate, administration and the student to explore the possibility of creating an attendance contract with the student.
- If a student accumulates 14 absences a registered letter will be sent from the school administration indicating there is a danger of the student not qualifying for the credit and outlining what must happen to prevent this consequence, and indicating the appeal procedure that is in place.
An excused absence is one approved by the student’s parent or guardian. These absences will still contribute to the maximum of 16 absences which can cause loss of eligibility for the course credit. Students will be marked present for special circumstances such as student was in the office, student was accessing student services, student was on an authorized field trip, participating on a school team activity and student job placement such as co-op.
As well, students will be documented as excused for other special circumstances such as chronic or acute medical conditions, specialist appointments, religious observances, legal responsibilities and a death in the family. As well, students can be excused from school if they are involved in an educational opportunity or special activity that the school approves as such. Such absences shall not be used in the calculation of the 20% threshold.
- Last year the HRSB implemented a new Web-based Student Information System (SIS). SIS allows students and parents to log on to their own private online account and see grades, track attendance, learn about upcoming assignments, and catch up on school events and announcements. Login procedures and additional information will be provided by the school.
- School Messenger is an automated dialing system that will call the homes of all Millwood students who have missed class during the day. The system will leave a message where possible and calls will take place between 6pm and 9pm.