DESE has amended the definition of an “absence” to reflect remote, off site, and virtual learning. This definition replaces the previous definition set forth in COM-18-093 for state reporting purposes.
A student is absent if the student is not:
1. present for onsite instruction provided by the district,
2. participating in a planned district-approved activity, or
3. engaged in scheduled instruction at an off-site location, including remote learning.
All school districts have the ability to define the attendance absence codes that are appropriate for the district’s needs. Use of the attendance codes should be in accordance with Ark. Code Ann. §§ 6-18-201 et seq. and 6-20-2303. The attendance absence codes are set up in eSchool and should be modified as applicable and allowable.
Based on the above definition, a district will need to review the attendance view setups in the district’s eSchool database for each building to ensure that all of the appropriate absence codes are included in the views. All attendance codes, such as excused, unexcused, or any other code meeting the definition of “state reported absence” should be included in the attendance views to ensure accurate reporting to the state in cycles 3, 5, 6 and 7.
Only the district’s eSchool Administrator should have access and make changes to the attendance view setup and/or attendance absence codes. Please contact your APSCN Field Rep for additional assistance.
For information on chronic absenteeism, please check the resources available at http://www.arkansased.gov/divisions/learning-services/attendance.