Truancy Procedures for the 2020-2021 School Year:
Student attendance is expected no matter what type of instruction and learning is provided in your district: in-school, virtual or hybrid. If your district has changed its attendance policy due to the pandemic, please send a copy to Dr. Paula Miller at email@example.com.
The Illinois Compulsory Attendance Law requires that all children aged 6-17 must attend school and that it is the responsibility of the parent to see that they attend.
School Districts: To report a truancy referral, please complete the Truancy Student Referral Form in its entirety. Do not leave any areas blank and do not write “see attached” in the full day/partial day truant sections.
Referrals should be made only after all local resources have been exhausted. Suggested local interventions (many that can be handled virtually due to Covid-19) include SST meetings, parent meetings, IEP development, home visits, home calls, social worker involvement, liaison officer contacts and DCFS calls if other home issues are evident. Once these have been attempted, please complete the Truancy Student Referral Form.
Upon receiving a completed Truancy Student Referral Form, a “first letter” will be sent to the parents explaining the law and informing them that it is their responsibility to get their child(ren) to school every day in a timely manner. A return-to-school deadline date will be included in the letter and a copy sent to the referring school official. Please review that letter and the return date.
Contact Paula Miller via email if the child does not return within one week of the deadline. Please do not contact Paula on the first day the student misses. We ask that you give the process one week to work while you contact parents, talk to the truant’s friends, and follow up at your building level.
If the student does not return, or begins to fall back into the truant pattern after an initial return to school, email Paula Miller with the new absence numbers. A second letter will then be sent. Follow the same process for the third letter and the parent conference. If, after three letters and a school/parent/student truancy officer conference the child is still truant, this will be referred back to the district and a truancy ticket issued. Juvenile court no longer takes truancy referrals. Do not complete a new referral form for a continued truancy after the first letter is sent; the first form is enough for the files.
For questions or more information, contact Paula Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. It is easier to reach Paula via email, but you can also leave her a voice message at 847-803-6704.