EVERY DAY MATTERS
Our first priority at PHS is education, either in the classroom or in other activities planned by classroom teachers. Classroom attendance is the first expectation placed on students by parents, teachers and administrators. A student in the classroom is part of the learning community. The student owes it to themselves to be present.
When a student is late or absent from school, he/she misses out on experiences and opportunities to learn and develop the skills and attitudes needed to become successful adults, productive citizens and valued employees.
For most of our students, the school day at Premier High School is only four hours. We strongly encourage daily attendance and on time arrival by making sure students get plenty of sleep so they arrive at school on time ready and eager to learn.
Texas Attendance Laws
The state compulsory attendance law requires that students at least 6 years of age, and those who have not yet reached their 19th birthday attend school and school required tutorial sessions unless the student is otherwise legally exempted or excused. School staff must investigate and report violations of the state compulsory attendance law.
A student absent from school without permission from any class or from required tutorials will be considered “truant” and subject to disciplinary action.
Truancy may also result in assessment of penalties by a court of law for the parent. State law requires that the school apply truancy prevention measures if the student is absent, without excuse, on three or more days or parts of days within a four-week period. If a student is absent, without excuse, on ten or more days or parts of days within a six-month period in the same school year, and those absences are verified by the campus as unexcused, students 12 years and older may be referred to truancy court.
Further, state law permits the school to file a complaint against parents contributing to nonattendance regardless of their child’s age. Please refer to Texas Education Code (TEC) 25 and the Texas Family Code 65 for more details.
A student who voluntarily attends or enrolls after his or her 19th birthday is required to attend each school day. If a student 19 years of age or older has more than five unexcused absences in a semester, the school may revoke the student’s enrollment, except that the school may not revoke the enrollment on a day on which the student is physically present at school.
The student’s presence on school property thereafter would be unauthorized and may be considered trespassing. Notice to Parents: Under TEC § 25.095(a), you are hereby notified that if a student is absent from school on ten or more days or parts of days within a six-month period in the same school year, the student’s parent is subject to prosecution under TEC § 25.093; and the student is subject to referral to a truancy court for truant conduct under Texas Family Code § 65.003(a).
90% RULE & LOSS OF CREDIT
In addition to the Compulsory Attendance Law, there is the 90% law. In order to receive course credit, a student is required to attend class 90 percent of the days a class is offered regardless of whether the student’s absences are excused or unexcused. A student attending less than ninety (90) percent of school days will lose credit for the class and will be required to complete an Attendance Plan given to them by the Attendance Committee to regain credit. This can include, but is not limited to teacher tutorials, extended school days, Saturday school, and/or other assignments issued by the Attendance Committee. Students will automatically lose credit after their fourth (4th) or fifth (5th) absence in a 6-week period. The number of absences allowed each 6 weeks depends on the number of days in the 6 week period. ALL ABSENCES, WHETHER EXCUSED OR NOT EXCUSED WILL COUNT TOWARD LOSS OF CREDIT.
If the student drops below 90%, the student may earn credit for the class by completing a plan approved by the principal.
Submission of the attendance appeal must occur within 30 school days of the end of the semester in which the credit was denied. The campus attendance committee then meets and renders a decision based on the circumstances as presented by the student and parent within 30 school days of the end of the semester in which the credit was denied.
When a student is absent, parents/guardians are required to notify the School by phone or email on the morning of the absence. A parent note must also be sent the next day with the student. If they went to a health care professional appointment, court appearance, PO required meeting, Immigration appointment, College visit, etc. they need to provide valid documentation provided by said entity.
Please note that parents are required to provide documentation for any and all absences within three (3) days of any absence or by Friday within the week of the absence. Failure to do so will result in an unexcused absence for the day.
A student absent for more than three (3) consecutive days because of a personal illness must bring a statement from a doctor or health clinic verifying the illness or condition. No documentation will automatically result in unexcused absences and will be considered in violation of compulsory attendance laws.
Students that fall below the 90% attendance may be required to move to a 6-hour block.
- Parents must report absences due to illness and must give permission for all other absences or leaving school early by 8:00 AM on the day missed or before.
- Please email the Campus Secretary.
- Parent must send doctor’s within the week the student is absent.
- If questions arise about how an absence or tardy should be counted, the decision will be made by the Attendance Committee. Decisions can be appealed to the Attendance Committee at [email protected]
- Absence from school without parent notification is a truancy.
- Student leaving school without parent permission is a truancy.
Students arriving late to school will be asked to enter their information in the computer in the lobby. Three tardies equals one absence. Students will be required to makeup time by attending longer school days or through community service.
Students needing to leave campus early are required to present one of the following to the front office:
- A parent note stating the reason for leaving early to include parent email and current parent phone number.
- Email from parent must be sent to our front office with the reason for leaving early. Please email the Campus Secretary.
- Parent may check out student at the front office.
VOE-VERIFICATION OF ENROLLMENT AND ATTENDANCE
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) requires a VOE for any student applying for an instruction permit and /or a license under the age of 18. These are issued at PHS by the Campus Director. To be eligible for a VOE the student must be enrolled at PHS and be in compliance with the TEA “90% Rule”.
Texas Education Code, Section 25.092 states that a student may not be given credit for a class unless the student is in attendance for at least 90% of the days the class is offered. The 90% attendance rule applies when determining VOE eligibility.
If a student has missed more than 10% of the regular school days and is at “Loss of Credit” they must complete an Attendance Plan given to the student by the Attendance Committee, have the credits restored and demonstrate good attendance (be in compliance with the 90% rule) for 6 weeks after making up all seat time before a VOE will be issued.
Students at Loss of Credit the final 6 weeks of school will be required to wait until the new school year and demonstrate 6 weeks of good attendance before being eligible for a VOE.
Please note: Summer school does not count as make-up time.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A STUDENT MISSES ONE DAY OF SCHOOL, FOR ANY REASON?
- Students start falling behind on their course completions.
- Students miss out on valuable information provided from their teacher or school.
- A school loses funding from the State. This could affect the ability to purchase supplies for the classroom, such as chromebooks and updated computer software. Multiply this by 110 students, it could mean the difference between hiring or laying off staff, buying new equipment, or funding a new program.
- A community loses valuable resources at a huge cost. Students who miss school challenge our community with immeasurable lost time and countless millions of dollars in human services for “repair work” in areas such as crime, counseling, and drugs.
WHY DOES MY CHILD HAVE TO ATTEND SATURDAY SCHOOL?
There are various reasons why Premier High School offers Saturday School:
- STAAR Testing Tutorials.
- Student needs or wants extra tutorial time.
- House Bill 4545 (extra tutorial time required)
- Too many tardies or absences have caused your child to fall behind in school. (Saturday School Mandatory)
- Student is not on pace with their courses. (Saturday School Mandatory)
While Saturday School doesn't seem like fun, it is an extra opportunity for your child to get help. We ALL want our students to be successful! If your child is struggling or not meeting weekly testing goals then Saturday Tutorials are a MUST.
WHY IS MY CHILD BEING SWITCHED TO A 6 HOUR BLOCK?
Students that fall below 90% attendance may be required to move to a 6 hour block to makeup hours and catch-up on their courses. This is reviewed on a case by case basis. Our goal is to ensure that our students achieve academic success.