Changes made to Raleigh County attendance policy - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Changes made to Raleigh County attendance policy

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BECKLEY -
Raleigh County is currently ranked 41st out of the state's 55 counties for poor attendance.
The hope with the attendance policy change is to get the students and their parents in front of a judge much quicker than they used to and hopefully fix the truancy problem as soon as possible.

Attendance director Millard Francis said under the new policy students with an attendance issue will no longer have to wait as long as a month before they go in front of a judge for a hearing.

He said the goal is not to punish students but to make sure the parents are aware of the problem and to get the students help if needed.

"That's our goal... to make sure it helps the parent help the student, it helps everyone. You know we want a big happy family, from the parents to the students to the teachers to the principals to my department," he said.

The other change is students have to turn in an excuse for their absence within 48 school hours.  Francis said he and Judge Hutchinson are hoping the new policy will set in quickly so the students can get the most out of their schooling.

"That's our main thing to make sure our students get a quality education, because if they're not at school they're not going to get that quality education and with the great teachers and administrators we have, if we get them there I'm pretty sure we can help that student," he added.

The attendance policy was approved at the Raleigh County Board of Education meeting Tuesday night.  Wednesday, the board sent out a message to parents reminding them what time students need to be at school.

Click here for a look at the complete policy.