Schools will contact parents of students who have unexcused absences. These efforts may include telephone calls to parents, a letter from the principal after 3 unexcused absences, and other attempts to engage the family or offer available services.
Report #1 – Parent Group Meeting (PGM)
When the student has 6 unexcused absences, the school send a report to the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office be@school program. The be@school team will send a letter to the parent(s) directing them to attend a Parent Group Meeting (PGM). At the PGM, a be@school representative will explain compulsory school attendance laws and consequences of continued unexcused absences, the benefits of education, and the services available to assist families. Some families will be assigned to a Contracted Community Agency (CCA) at this time. The CCA will provide direct services to assist the family in getting the child to school and refer the family to other services needed to remove attendance barriers.
Report #2 – Educational Neglect and Truancy Report (STAR Referral): The STAR Meeting
If the child has 3 additional unexcused absences after Report #1 (PGM), totaling at least 9 unexcused absences, the school will submit Report #2 (STAR). All families will be directed by mail to contact their assigned CCA worker and begin case management services. Some families will be directed to attend a School Team Attendance Review (STAR) meeting. The STAR meeting will be attended by the parent(s), the student (12 – 17 years), a be@school representative, the CCA worker, and if available, a school representative. The goal of the STAR meeting is to create a detailed plan to resolve barriers which negatively impact the student’s attendance. After the STAR meeting is held, the CCA worker will monitor the child’s attendance weekly and provide assistance.
Child Protection Services
Children under 12: If the child accrues 6 additional unexcused absences following Report #2 (STAR), totaling at least 15 unexcused absences, the school will submit Report #3 to be@school. The be@school team will review the report and send it to Child Protection Services.
Children 12 and over: If the child accrues 6 additional unexcused absences following Report #2 (STAR), totaling at least 15 unexcused absences, the school will submit Report #3 to be@school. If the student continues to miss school after the third report, the County Attorney's Office will consult for possible petition filer in juvenile court. The court hearing will focus on services and sanctions that promote attendance and educational success for the student (e.g., tutoring, credit recovery, mentoring, etc.). Parent involvement will be actively pursued. If multiple interventions have been attempted and the child becomes an older truant, services may no longer be offered.