School attendance is not only a good habit, state law requires it. Arizona State Law (15-802.A, 15-803.E) requires every person who has custody of a child between the ages of six and sixteen shall make sure the child attends school for the full time school is in session unless unable to attend due to illness or another legitimate reason.
To encourage and improve school attendance, the Tolleson Elementary School District has implemented a truancy program in partnership with Maricopa County Juvenile Court. This truancy program is called C.U.T.S. (Court Unified Truancy Suppression) DIRECT-CITE Program. We will be tracking attendance very closely. Your child is expected to be at school every day, unless there is an excused reason not to be. An absence is defined as a minimum of one missed class period per day. An unexcused absence will count as a truant day as defined by law. A student is "habitually truant" if he/she has five or more unexcused absences from school OR is absent more than ten percent (18 days) of the required number of school days per year whether the absence is excused or unexcused.
When a student has five or more unexcused absences or 18 excessive absences (excused OR unexcused), the student can be cited to the CUTS DIRECT-CITE Program through the Juvenile Court. The hearing will be held at the Juvenile Court Facility. Both parent(s) and the child will be expected to appear at the hearing. Consequences at the hearing may include the following: required attendance of the parent and child at an education class (to be held on Saturdays), work hours assigned to the child, counseling, etc. The parent will be assessed a $50 Diversion fee. Failure to complete these consequences may result in the prosecution of the child at the Juvenile Court. If you, as a parent, receive a citation for Failure to Provide Education to your child and are convicted, it is a Class 3 misdemeanor punishable by jail time and/or fine.
The education of your child is extremely important to us. This program is another way that the Tolleson Elementary School District is working with the community to ensure a quality education for all students. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your child's school.