|(a) A school district shall consider the following
best practices for truancy prevention measures.
(1) Develop an attendance policy that clearly outlines
requirements related to truancy in accordance with Texas Education
Code (TEC), Chapter 25, Subchapter C, and communicate this information
to parents at the beginning of the school year.
(2) Create a culture of attendance that includes training
staff to talk meaningfully with students and parents about the attendance
policy and the root causes of unexcused absences.
(3) Create incentives for perfect attendance and improved
(4) Educate students and their families on the positive
impact of school attendance on performance.
(5) Provide opportunities for students and parents
to address causes of absence and/or truancy with district staff and
link families to relevant community programs and support.
(6) Develop collaborative partnerships, including planning,
referral, and cross-training opportunities, between appropriate school
staff, attendance officers, program-related liaisons, and external
partners such as court representatives, community and faith-based
organizations, state or locally funded community programs for truancy
intervention or prevention, and law enforcement to assist students.
(7) Determine root causes of unexcused absences and
review campus- and district-level data on unexcused absences to identify
systemic issues that affect attendance.
(8) Use existing school programs such as Communities
In Schools, 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Restorative Discipline,
and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) to provide
students and their parents with services.
(9) At the beginning of each school year, conduct a
needs assessment and identify and list, or map, services and programs
available within the school district and the community that a school,
a student, or a student's parent or guardian may access to address
the student's barriers to attendance and make the information available
to staff, students, and parents. The information must include, but
is not limited to:
(A) services for pregnant and parenting students;
(B) services for students experiencing homelessness;
(C) services for students in foster care;
(D) federal programs including, but not limited to,
Title 1, Part A, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act;
(E) state programs including, but not limited to, State
Compensatory Education programs;
dropout prevention programs and programs for
"at risk" youth;
(G) programs that occur outside of school time;
(H) counseling services;
(I) tutoring programs and services available at no
or low cost;
(J) mental health services;
(K) alcohol and substance abuse prevention and treatment
(L) mentoring programs and services;
(M) juvenile justice services and programs;
(N) child welfare services and programs;
(O) other state or locally funded programs for truancy
prevention and intervention; and
(P) other supportive services that are locally available
for students and families through faith-based organizations, local
governments, and community-based organizations.
(10) After identifying and listing, or mapping, services
available in the district and community, school districts should target
any new resources, programs, or services to gaps in services identified
during the needs assessment.
(11) School districts should ensure that personnel,
including truancy prevention facilitators or juvenile case managers,
attendance officers, McKinney-Vento liaisons, foster care liaisons,
Title IX coordinators, 504 coordinators, pregnancy and parenting coordinators,
dropout prevention coordinators, special education staff, and other
appropriate student services personnel, meet to contribute to the
needs assessment, discuss opportunities to work together, and identify
strategies to coordinate both internally and externally to address
students' attendance barriers.
(b) In determining services offered to students identified
in TEC, §25.0915(a-3), a school district shall consider:
(1) offering an optional flexible school day program
and evening and online alternatives;
(2) working with businesses that employ students to
help students coordinate job and school responsibilities; and
(3) offering before school, after school, and/or Saturday
prevention or intervention programs or services that implement best
and promising practices.