New Mexico - Chronic Absenteeism Early Warning Systems: Programs and Services (S/D)

Area: 
Programs And Services
Policy Type: 
Statute
Summary: 

State law encourages or requires districts to address truancy or chronic absenteeism through the provision of comprehensive student support services.

New Mexico Statutes 22-12-9. Unexcused absences and truancy; attendance policies.

C.  Each school district and charter school shall maintain an attendance policy that:

  • (1)  provides for early identification of students with unexcused absences, students in need of early intervention and habitual truants and provides intervention strategies that focus on keeping students in need of early intervention in an educational setting and prohibit out-of-school suspension and expulsion as the punishment for unexcused absences and habitual truancy;
  • (2)  uses withdrawal as provided in Section 22-8-2 NMSA 1978 only after exhausting intervention efforts to keep students in educational settings;
  • (3)  requires that class attendance be taken for every instructional day in every public school or school program in the school district; and
  • (4)  provides for schools to document the following for each student identified as an habitual truant:
    • (a)  attempts of the school to notify the parent that the student had unexcused absences;
    • (b)  attempts of the school to meet with the parent to discuss intervention strategies; and
    • (c)  intervention strategies implemented to support keeping the student in school.

D.  The department shall review and approve school district and charter school attendance policies.

E.  School districts and charter schools shall report unexcused absences and habitual truancy rates to the department in a form and at such times as the department determines and shall document intervention efforts made to keep students in need of early intervention and habitual truants in educational settings. Locally chartered charter schools shall provide copies of their reports to the school district. The department shall compile school district and charter school reports on rates of unexcused absences and habitual truancy and require school districts and charter schools to certify that the information is being reported consistently.

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