September is National Attendance Awareness Month, a time for schools and districts to promote positive attendance for PK-12 students. Also to bring awareness to absenteeism and the effects attendance can have on academic performance and success. According to the Oregon Department of Education’s Comprehensive Distance Learning guidelines, “The ability to continue to monitor attendance, as a proxy for engagement, is arguably one of the most important ways schools can help ensure equitable access to student learning and account for student wellbeing during a pandemic across any instructional model.”
The beginning of our 2020-21 school year looks different, but absences do count. Both synchronous (live/in-person) and asynchronous (not live/in-person) learning can count for daily attendance during comprehensive distance learning. Teachers will mark a student present, once per day in elementary and in middle and high school attendance will be taken for each scheduled class period.
The following interactions count for student attendance:
Participating in a video class;
Communication from the student to the teacher via chat, communication app, text message or email;
A phone call with the student, or, for younger students, with the parent;
Posting completed coursework to a learning management system or web-based platform or via email; or turning in completed coursework on a given day.
A student is considered ABSENT for the day when there is no evidence of student interaction for an entire day (midnight-midnight) during a scheduled school day. This also includes WEDNESDAYS! Students and families, even though the schedule is different on Wednesdays, attendance is taken by your student’s teacher(s) through synchronous (live) and asynchronous (not live) participation.
In order to provide families with clear and concise descriptions of student attendance and participation, a daily attendance reminder call will go out by 5pm through a Hillsboro School District automated robocall. This is to share that the student has not engaged during the school day. The robocall that you may receive will state the following message, “Hello this is the Hillsboro School District letting you know that your student has not yet participated in Comprehensive Distance Learning today. If at any point your student engages in online learning this evening, they will be counted as attending for today. If they do not engage in learning, they will be counted as absent for today. Contact your student’s school for questions regarding attendance.”
If you have any questions about attendance please connect with your student’s teacher or building administrator.