absence policy faq

Absence Policy Frequently Asked Questions

Highland Park Board of Education Policy 5200 (Attendance) clarifies the district's position on student absenteeism. Below is a list of commonly asked questions about absences.

Q. How long must a student be in school to be considered present?

A. For a school in session during morning and afternoon, the student must be present for at least one hour in the morning and at least one hour in the afternoon to be considered as present for a full day; for a school in session during either morning or afternoon, the student must be present at least two hours to be recorded as present for the full day (N.J.A.C. 6A:32-8.3(k)), for example, twilight programs. For a half day preschool or kindergarten session, the student must be present for at least one hour to be considered present for a full day.

Q. How long must a student be in school if it is only in session for a half-day?

A. A student must be present at least one hour during any morning, afternoon, or evening session to be recorded as present one-half day (New Jersey School Register, Ch.3).

Q. When is a student considered "truant?"

A. Truancy is defined as 10 or more cumulative unexcused absences (N.J.A.C. 6A:16-1.3). 

Q. What are excused days a student can be absent?

A. The following types of absences are defined by the New Jersey Department of Education as excused:

-Religious observance
-College visit
-"Take Our Children to Work Day”
districts on April 25, 2017) or other rule issued by the Commissioner;
-Participation in observance of Veterans Day
-Election membership activities

Q. How does being late to school impact a student's absence record?

A. According to Board Policy 5420, three instances of unexcused tardiness will equal one unexcused absence.