Attendance is a legal responsibility for all students enrolled in Barnum Public Schools. Absence from class negatively affects student academic performance. The attendance policy for the School District is designed with these facts in mind. The School Board for Barnum Public Schools adopted an attendance policy for the elementary and high school. This policy follows the 2012 Minnesota Statue, 120A.22 Compulsory Instruction. Basic provisions are as follows:



After three (3) unexcused absences or a combination of eight (8) total excused and/or unexcused absences from school a letter will be sent home notifying parent/guardian. A copy of this letter will be forwarded to the district’s truancy officer. Upon receipt of letter the truancy officer may elect to place student on an attendance contract or meet with parents.


Your son or daughter has accumulated 15 days of absences. After the 15th day, without a Medical Professional note excusing your child from school, you are required to provide a signed note from a Medical Professional or our School’s Nurse indicating your child had a medical reason for his or her absences.” The truancy officer will send home a letter notifying parent/guardian that their son/daughter is truant according to Minnesota Statute 250A.02, subdivision 3 and request a meeting to address the issue further. Other school officials may be requested to attend this meeting. School services or other outside services will be offered to assist with the problem when appropriate. A parent/student contract may be ordered.


The truancy office will become officially involved in a student’s truant behavior when the number of unexcused absences approaches seven (7). However, the principal meets with the officer on a weekly basis to discuss students in trouble with truancy issues. The officer may begin working with the student and family on a preventative program.


If absences still persist the truancy officer may refer the student to the county attorney’s office as a habitual truant to Minnesota Statue 260C.00, subdivision19. Upon receipt from the truancy officer the county attorney’s may elect to file a truancy petition with the district court.


Students are expected to bring a note signed by the parent stating the reason for the absence to the office upon their return to school. The note must specify the reason for the absence. If a note is not received within two school days, any unverified absences will be rolled over and considered unexcused.  The unexcused absence means that any work missed may not be graded; and the student will be assigned up to an hour of detention for each hour unexcused. If a note or phone call is received after two school days, the absence will become excused but the student will still serve one hour of detention for not bringing a note to excuse the absence within the required two day time frame.



  • The Barnum Public Schools recognize the following as valid student absences.
  • Doctor’s written excuses for illness
  • Verified medical appointments
  • Family emergencies (Upon principal’s discretion)
  • Court appointments
  • Written, pre-approved absences


Anytime a parent knows their child is going to be absent, for an entire day or more the High School Office must be notified, and a pre-excused permission slip must be picked up. Family vacations and extended periods of time away from school must go through the pre-excused procedure.


School initiated or authorized functions and actions such as suspensions, student dismissed by the school nurse for illness, extracurricular activities


The attendance policy has been implemented to provide maximum educational support for students and their families and to attempt to provide every student in our school district with a successful educational experience.


Half Day Attendance Policy

A student must be in school by 12:00 noon to attend extracurricular activities for that day. If a student leaves school during the day and has not been in class attendance for ½ day, or if a student leaves school because of sickness he/she cannot return to participate or attend extracurricular activities that day. If a student violates this rule he/she will be assigned 2 hours of detention. The only exceptions will be emergencies or prearrangement made with the administration. In each case the parent or guardian must contact the administration.



Course credit requirements include not only completion of all required course work, but also participation and interaction through regular and prompt attendance.  Frequent absences lead to disruption of the instructional process for the individual student, the classroom teacher and other students in the class.  For these reasons, a student who is absent more than eight (8) times unexcused from any class during a semester may be denied credit for the course, subject to review and appeal procedures.