FEB(LEGAL) - ATTENDANCE: ATTENDANCE ACCOUNTING
A district must maintain records to reflect the average daily attendance for the allocation of Foundation School Program (FSP) funds and other funds allocated by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). The district must maintain records and make reports concerning student attendance and participation in special programs as required by the commissioner of education. The superintendent, principals, and teachers are responsible to the board and the state to maintain accurate, current attendance records. 19 TAC 129.21(a), (e)
Districts shall use the student attendance accounting standards established by the commissioner to maintain records and make reports on student attendance and student participation in special programs. The official standards are described in TEA's Student Attendance Accounting Handbook (SAAH). 19 TAC 129.1025
The superintendent is responsible for the safekeeping of all attendance records and reports. The superintendent may determine whether the properly certified attendance records or reports for the school year are to be stored in the central office, on the respective school campuses of a district, or at another secure location. Regardless of where such records are filed or stored, they must be readily available for audit by TEA. 19 TAC 129.21(d)
A student must be enrolled for at least two hours of instruction to be considered in membership for one half day, and for at least four hours of instruction to be considered in membership for one full day.
Students enrolled on a full-day basis may earn one full day of attendance each school day.
Students enrolled on a half-day basis may earn only one half day attendance each school day. Attendance is determined for these pupils by recording absences in a period during the half day they are scheduled to be present.
Alternative Attendance Accounting Program
Students who are enrolled in and participating in an alternative attendance accounting program approved by the commissioner will earn attendance according to the statutory and rule provisions applicable to that program.
Attendance for State Funding Purposes
Attendance for all grades shall be determined by the absences recorded at the official attendance-taking time during the campus's instructional day, unless the board adopts a policy, or delegates to the superintendent the authority to establish procedures for recording absences in an alternative hour, or unless the students for which attendance is being taken are enrolled in and participating in a commissioner-approved alternative attendance accounting program.
The established period in which absences are recorded may not be changed during the school year.
Students absent at the time the attendance roll is taken, during the daily period selected, are counted absent for the entire day, unless the students are enrolled in and participating in a commissioner-approved alternative attendance accounting program. Students present at the time the attendance roll is taken, during the daily period selected, are counted present for the entire day, unless the students are enrolled in and participating in a commissioner-approved alternative attendance accounting program.
19 TAC 129.21(g)–(h)
A student removed to a disciplinary alternative education program is counted in computing the average daily attendance of students in a district for the student's time in actual attendance in the program. Education Code 37.008(f)
Incentive for Additional Instructional Days
The commissioner shall adjust the average daily attendance of a district under Education Code 48.005 in the manner provided by Education Code 48.0051(b) if the district:
- Provides the minimum number of minutes of operational and instructional time required under Education Code 25.081 and commissioner rules adopted under that section over at least 180 days of instruction; and
- Offers an additional 30 days of half-day instruction for students enrolled in prekindergarten through fifth grade.
Education Code 48.0051(a)
Funding for Off-Campus Programs
Funding eligibility for a student participating in an off-campus program will include time instructed in the off-campus program. A campus may choose an alternate attendance-taking time for a group of students that is scheduled to be off-campus during the regular attendance-taking time. The alternate attendance-taking time will be in effect for the period of days or weeks for which the group is scheduled to be off-campus during the regular attendance-taking time (for example, for the semester or for the duration of employment). This alternate attendance-taking time may not be changed once it is selected for a particular group of students. If attendance is taken at an off-campus location, the district must ensure that attendance is taken in accordance with the SAAH.
For a district to receive FSP funding for a student participating in an off-campus program, the district must have documentation of an agreement between the district and the college.
19 TAC 129.1031(c), (d) [See EHDD]
A student not actually on campus when attendance is taken may be considered in attendance for FSP purposes if:
- The student is participating in a board-approved activity under the direction of a member of a district's professional or paraprofessional staff, or an adjunct staff member who has a bachelor's degree and is eligible for participation in the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS). [See FM]
- The student is participating in a mentorship approved by district personnel to serve as one or more of the advanced measures needed to complete the Distinguished Achievement Program outlined in 19 Administrative Code Chapter 74. [See EIF]
- The student is absent for one of the purposes listed at Excused Absences for Compulsory Attendance Determinations in FEA(LEGAL).
- The student is in attendance at a dropout recovery education program under Education Code 29.081. [See GNC]
- The student's absence is permitted by other conditions related to off-campus instruction described in the SAAH.
Education Code 25.087, 29.081(e), (f); 19 TAC 129.21(i)–(k)
The commissioner may adjust the average daily attendance of a district all or part of which is located in an area declared a disaster area by the governor under Government Code Chapter 418 if the district experiences a decline in average daily attendance that is reasonably attributable to the impact of the disaster.
The commissioner may make the adjustment under this section for the two-year period following the date of the governor's initial proclamation or executive order declaring the state of disaster.
Education Code 48.006(a), (c)
Parental Consent to Leave Campus
Before a district may count a student in attendance under these provisions or in attendance when the student was allowed to leave campus during any part of the school day, the board must adopt a policy, or delegate to the superintendent the authority to establish procedures, addressing parental consent for a student to leave campus and the district must distribute the policy or procedures to staff and to all parents of students in the district. 19 TAC 129.21(l)