Attendance Policy

Buncombe County Schools

Attendance Policy 

Absences are the responsibility of the student.  Following an absence, students are required to bring a note from medical personnel and/or a parent to the Main Office. 

In accordance with G.S. 115C-378, every parent, guardian, or custodian in North Carolina having charge or control of a student between the ages of 7 and 16 years shall cause the student to attend school continuously for a period equal to the time which the public school to which the student is assigned is in session. 

Upon the tenth (10th) unexcused full day absence, a conference is required pursuant to G.S. 115C-381. The parent will be notified with a 10 Day Unexcused Absence Letter.  Following the conference, the attendance intervention team will continue to monitor the student’s overall attendance and academic progress and revise the plan as needed. The attendance intervention team will continue to assess the student/family needs and make referrals as appropriate. If unexcused absences significantly decrease, the intervention plan can be continued without further legal action. If the plan does not result in reduced unexcused absences, legal petition for truancy may be filed against student and/or parent.

Excused absences are absences that satisfy the requirements below.  These absences allow the student to make up all missed work within a specified time.  

Excused Absences: 

  1. Illness or injury prevents the student from being physically able to attend school.
  2. The student is absent due to the death of a member of the immediate family.
  3. Emergency medical or dental appointment or such an appointment that has been approved in advance by the principal.
  4. The student is a party to or is under subpoena as a witness in a court proceeding.
  5. The student has obtained prior principal approval to be absent due to the observance of an event required or suggested by the religion of the student or the student’s parents.
Individual Class Attendance Policy 

All days a student is marked absent count toward the high school individual class attendance policy (only 5 absences allowed per class) except for days that are determined to be waivable. Example of waived days would be long term illnesses under a doctor’s care and death of an immediate family member. Appropriate documentation must be submitted to the Attendance Waiver Committee and is necessary for consideration of days to be waived.  Waiver forms are located in the main office.  To be CONSIDERED for waiving, days MUST FIRST BE EXCUSED.  "Excused" does not necessarily mean days will be "waived", but it is a required first step.  Unexcused days will NOT be considered for waiver.  

1.  To obtain credit in a given class, a student must be in attendance for a minimum of 170 days.  A student must be in class for at least two-thirds of the class period to be counted present.  Students in schools offering full course credit during a 90-day period hereinafter referred to as the Concentrated Curriculum Semester Scheduling (CCSS), must be in attendance a minimum of 85 days. 

2.  A student is considered present in the school when in attendance at the following places:

  • School sponsored field trips
  • Activities initiated / scheduled by the school
  • Special school events requiring early dismissal
  • Assignment to in-school suspension 

3.  As soon as a parent anticipates a student's extended absence due to a severe, prolonged, or chronic illness under a physician's care, the parent shall notify the principal.  Upon receipt of a physicians’ written request, the principal may make arrangements for home or hospital instruction.  If a student makes a good faith effort to complete the work under these conditions, in a timely manner, days missed may be submitted for consideration for “waived” status toward this policy. Parents should address all questions regarding this type of instruction to the principal. 

4.  Any student who has a passing average in one or more courses, but has not attended 170 days, or 85 days in a CCSS, will receive an “F” in the course (due to attendance), and must satisfactorily complete a special series of summer school sessions for each such course See the Attendance Summer School information on page 7. 

5.     Students have the ability to make up absence over 5 in any class (Other than Science) in Attendance Study Lab (ASL).  More information is in the Attendance Study Lab section on page 7. 

6.     Occasionally unique situations arise which are not specifically addressed by this policy.  The superintendent, upon written recommendation from the school principal, may authorize alternatives to the policy in order to achieve fairness to the student without weakening the effect of the policy. 

7.     Pursuant to this policy, students failing to meet attendance requirements in any required course for promotion or graduation shall neither be promoted nor allowed to participate in graduation ceremonies. 

8.     Notes from home or a doctor are required upon the student returning to school following any absence. 

9.     A copy of this policy shall be distributed to all students at the beginning of the school year.  Students transferring from another administrative unit will be provided a copy of this policy at the time of enrollment, and they will be allowed to have absences prorated based on the number of school days remaining in the school year.  

10. Phone requests for homework assignments must be made before 9:00 a.m.  Otherwise, assignments will be available the following day. 

11. Attendance at school-wide Assemblies 

Unless otherwise notified, all students are expected to attend school assemblies, advisory sessions, or class meetings.  Failure to attend meetings is equivalent to skipping class. 

12.  Dismissal of Intern/Spare Students 

·      All Intern students or students with a ‘spare’ course, must leave the school premises at the time indicated for early dismissal and not return.  

·      Those students who need to remain after their release time must see an assistant principal for a permission slip.  

·      The only exception to this rule would be to eat lunch during the lunch period after release time. 

·      Student returning to NBHS campus for fourth block may not be on campus until 12:30pm.  

·      It is the responsibility of students who have spares to be informed of any changes in daily school schedules. (ie: Hawk Quest, Early Release, School Delays, etc.) 

·      Students not complying with this regulation are subject to loss of their privilege.  

13. Visitors

No visitor will be allowed on this campus without the principal’s permission.  All visitors must report to the main office, sign-in, and wear a visitor’s nametag while on campus.

Tardy Policy 

All students are expected to be in at school and in the classroom on time.  Instruction begins immediately at the bell and students who are tardy to class miss valuable instructional time. To be counted present in a class, a student must be in attendance for at least 2/3 of the class period. 
  • Excused Tardies:
a. Late bus
b. Illness with doctor/dentist written confirmation
c. Official legal document
d. Principal's approval

For 1st Period & Tardy to school - The main office will handle all sign-in's and record all tardies in Power School. Students will be sent to class for the first three tardies.  After the 3rd tardy, students will go directly to ISS for the period.

For 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Period: Will be handled by the individual classroom teacher and recorded in Power School. After 6th tardy to class, students will receive a discipline referral. 

Sign In/Sign Out Procedures 

●   Students who arrive on campus late or leave school early must report directly to the main office before going to class or leaving campus.

● Students must bring a properly signed excuse from a parent to the main office to be validated before an early dismissal slip can be issued. The note is to be given to the main office before 7:55am and should include the time of dismissal. Students may pick up their early dismissal slip from the main office between classes or during their lunch.

● Those students becoming sick at school must call their parents from the main office before a dismissal slip is issued. 

● This slip will be shown to the teacher at the beginning of the class period and will be kept by the student for dismissal purposes.  When the student leaves the classroom, he/she will report to the main office to sign out.

● Students should report to the main office to sign back into school. The time returning will be noted on the slip that is to be given to the teacher upon returning to class.

● All work missed must be made up within three days following the last absence.

 Tardies & Sign Outs 

In all classes, the only excused Tardies/Sign Outs are for doctor’s appointments and court appearances.  This documentation will need to be provided by the student/parent to the main office so that the classroom teacher can be notified of the excused Tardy/Sign out. 

Failure to sign in when tardy, or out when leaving school, will result in disciplinary action.

 Attendance Study Lab (ASL)

After School Tuesdays and Thursdays 

North Buncombe High School recognizes a significant correlation between school attendance and academic success. NBHS also recognizes that as students develop reliable attendance habits, they are demonstrating a life skill that positively impacts their lives while in school and after graduation. As such, NBHS is committed to forming a cooperative alliance with parents and students in order to improve attendance.  Therefore, students are allowed to attend Attendance Study Lab when absences exceed the 5 days allowed for illness or emergency.

ASL Details

Attendance Study Lab is a privilege…students are expected to behave in an appropriate manner. All NBHS school rules for conduct are in effect in addition to the following after school rules. Disruption or failure to work will be grounds for dismissal without reimbursement and no credit given. Any student attending ASL must pay Mrs. Burrell (In the office) $5.00 and turn in this completed form no later than 3:30 P.M. the afternoon prior to the planned Attendance Study Lab.

All attendance must be made up during the current semester. Absences that are accumulated during the last week of the grading period may be made up during the first week of the second Nine Week Grading Period.  

Attendance Study Lab hours are from 3:15- 5:15 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday. 

It is the student’s responsibility to check with their teachers for all information such as absences, tardies, and class work. DO THIS BEFORE ATTENDING EACH ASL. Sessions are two hours and make up two missed blocks/class periods.

Please see the Attendance Study Lab contract for more details and guidelines.  ASL forms are located in the main office.

Only 16 ASL opportunities will be offered during a semester.  Specific dates for ASL are posted on the NBHS website and will be available in the main office.

Attendance Summer School

First two weeks after school 

Summer school to gain attendance credit will be held at NBHS as deemed necessary. Students attending must pay $50 per course for the first two courses and $25 per course for each additional course.  This fee will be used to employ necessary personnel and to furnish materials for students.

In the event a student is unable to afford the summer school, the student's parents may request a waiver of a portion of the fee by filing a statement of financial assets and liabilities.  The statement must be filed with the Principal.

Any student who attends less than 150 days in a course (75 days in a CCSS) will not receive credit for the course; however, the student may appeal in writing to the principal to be allowed to obtain credit for the course by attending the summer sessions.  Such appeal must be supported by medical or other compelling reasons.

During the summer school sessions, absence, tardiness, or disruptive behavior will result in dismissal from the summer school program and no credit will be given.  Dismissal will also result in the loss of fees paid.

If the student does not satisfactorily complete the attendance summer school session for each such course during the summer following that school year, no credit will be given and a grade of "F" will remain as the final grade for the course. Failing grades due to absences must be cleared by June 30.

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