In December 2016, the Ohio General Assembly passed House Bill 410 to support a preventative approach to excessive absences and truancy. Per HB 410, all Ohio school districts have been charged with both adopting new guidelines and developing additional procedures and resources to address interventions for students who are excessively absent from school.
Throughout the fall, members of the Loveland school community have met to problem solve the ways in which HB 410 impacts our families and day-to-day work, and we have appreciated the opportunity to reflect upon the numerous processes and resources that have already been in place to assist students, and families, in remaining engaged in school. Loveland celebrates a better than 95 percent attendance rate, which is reflective of the value our community places upon education, and the collaboration that exists between our schools and families when circumstances prevent students getting to school. Nevertheless, there are always opportunities to improve.
At the Board of Education’s Business Meeting on November 28, 2017, Interim Superintendent Dr. Amy Crouse presented the district’s new student attendance policy for final approval. You will begin to see new procedures reflected in how we track and intervene with student absences. New notice letters will be used when students are excessively absent from school, and absence intervention teams will develop corrective action plans for families struggling with attendance needs. You will see changes to student handbooks, reflecting the new policy and procedures when they are published next year. As always, if you have questions, you can always speak with your building administrator.
A summary of the new requirements set forth by HB 410 is as follows:
Based on HB 410, parents/guardians must be notified in writing when their student has:
• accumulated 38 hours of either excused or unexcused absences in a month,
• accumulated 65 hours of either excused or unexcused absences in a year,
• met the legal threshold for being defined “habitually truant”.
A student will be considered habitually truant if he/she accumulates, without legitimate excuse:
• 30 or more consecutive hours of absence,
• 42 or more hours of absence in one month,
• 72 or more hours of absence in one year.
If a student is deemed habitually truant, the student and parent/guardian will be referred to an Absence Intervention Team to develop a corrective plan for attendance issues.
If the student does not make progress or continues to be excessively absent after the implementation of a corrective plan, the law requires the district to file a complaint with the juvenile court.
Loveland City Schools will record student attendance based on the cumulative record of all minutes a student is and is not in school, beginning with the start of the school day and ending with dismissal. This record will include if a student leaves and returns during the school day. We understand it is sometimes necessary for a student to be absent from school for medical appointments, but parents/guardians are encouraged to enhance a student’s probability of success by not allowing mid-day appointments to become a regular habit.
To report a student absence, parents/guardians should contact school attendance offices:
• Loveland Early Childhood Center…..697-3060
• Loveland Primary and Elementary Schools…..697-3888
• Loveland Intermediate School…..774-6290
• Loveland Middle School…..697-3602
• Loveland High School…..697-3715
Eric J. Dool, M.Ed., NCSP
Director of Student Services