Dear BISD Parents/Guardians:
The law in the state of Texas (HB 2398) requires that children between the ages of 6 (or younger if enrolled in prekindergarten or kindergarten) and 19 to attend school. According to Section 25.095 of the Texas Education Code, as a parent, legal guardian, or person standing in parental relation to the child, you are responsible for ensuring that your child attends school regularly. If you fail to require your child to attend school as required by law, you commit the offense of contributing to a child’s truancy. A criminal complaint is filed against the parent/guardian when a student is absent without an acceptable written excuse for ten (10) days or parts of days within a six (6) month period. Those convicted of contributing to a child’s truancy will be subject to a fine of up to $500. Furthermore, your child, age 12 and over, is also subject to Truancy Court. They may be fined, have driving privileges revoked, or referred to the Juvenile Court system. It is crucial to note that in order for your child to receive credit for a class or grade, they are required to be in attendance at least 90% of the days the class meets. The law also states that Texas school districts are required to notify a parent in writing if their child is absent for three (3) days, or parts of days, without an acceptable written excuse and to initiate Truancy Prevention Measures to avoid court referrals or complaints to the maximum extent possible.
This letter serves to inform you of the procedures that the Brenham Independent School District has in place to address truancy and conform with the state of Texas House Bill 2398. Please refer to the Student Handbook for a list of acceptable excuse absences and the guidelines to ensure they are recorded accordingly. Failing to do so will initiate the following:
When a student reaches three (3) unexcused absences, a call from school staff and a warning letter will be sent home requesting a parent meeting with a school administrator to initiate Truancy Prevention Measures and address the root causes of the unexcused absences. Please contact the school immediately to prevent further actions.
When a student reaches five (5) unexcused absences, a 2nd warning letter will be sent home requesting a parent meeting with a school administrator to instate an Attendance Intervention Plan and to sign a Parent/Student contract. Please contact the school immediately to prevent further actions.
When a student reaches ten (10) unexcused absences within a 6 month period, a 3rd and final warning letter will be sent home advising you that a truancy referral and/or criminal complaint has been issued on you and/or your child's behalf. Washington County Truancy Court will mail you a citation. Please be present and on time on your court date to avoid further fines.
These letters will list the dates of the unexcused absences. If you have any questions or have reason to believe that the number of, or the status of absences listed, is incorrect, please call or email your school's attendance clerk immediately.
Your child’s attendance is important to us! Please help us by ensuring your child is in school each day and by providing the proper documentation no later than 3 working days after every absence.