Minneapolis Public Schools Attendance Policy

Ninety-five percent (95%) attendance is set as the district minimum standard for each student. In order for a student to have 95% attendance, the student must not miss more than eight days of school for an entire year, excused or unexcused.

Attendance Policy:  Minneapolis Public Schools recognizes that daily attendance is critical to academic achievement. It is our goal to work with students, families and communities to support regular school attendance and improve academic achievement. Please call your school for further assistance or questions about the attendance policy.

For every absence you MUST call the Attendance Line at 612-668-4186 no later than 10:00 AM the day of the absence, even if you have talked to or emailed the teacher.

It's the Law!

Minnesota law states that all students are required to attend school from age 7, or when they enter kindergarten (whichever comes first) until they are 18 years old. A student's failure to attend school may lead to legal action for the parents/guardians and the student.

What are Excused Absences?

  • Doctor/Dentist Appointments:  Whenever possible, please schedule doctor and dentist appointments before and after school. If you must schedule an appointment during school, the appointment will be excused only upon receiving a written note from the doctor or dentist.
  • Illness:  Students are allowed up to 8 total absences a year, or 3 days in a row, due to illness. A doctor's note must be provided if your child is gone from school more than 8 total days over the school year, or 3 days in a row. Because your child's health is important to us, school staff can help your child if you do not have health insurance or cannot afford to see a doctor. Please contact your school if you need help.
  • School Bus Problems: If your child misses school because the bus was late or did not show up at the bus stop, you must report this to the school that morning.
  • Religious Holidays/Cultural Observances: If your child will be gone due to a religious holiday or cultural observance, you must notify the school in advance.
  • Funeral: Students may be gone up to 4 days a year because of a funeral. If your child will be gone more than 4 days, you must get written approval for additional excused time from the Principal, Assistant Principal, or the Social Worker.
  • Family Emergency: Students may be gone up to 3 days a year because of a family emergency. If your child will be gone more than 3 days, you must get written approval for additional excused time from the Principal, Assistant Principal, or the Social Worker.
  • Family Activity: A student may be gone up to 5 days from school for a pre-approved family activity such as a vacation. To get pre-approval from the school, you must do the following:
  1. At least 10 days before leaving, request permission from the school for your child to be gone by submitting a Family Activity Form. See below for form.
  2. Before leaving, get your child's homework and agree that your child will finish the homework.
  3. Make sure that your child will not be gone for important tests like the MCA, MAP or MBST.
  4. Agree in writing that your child will miss no more than 5 days of school.
  5. Before leaving, get written approval from the Principal.

All days of vacation after 5 days will be considered unexcused. Once a student has reached 5 days of vacation, additional days of vacation will be considered unexcused absences and a Principal letter is sent home. At 6 days of unexcused absences, a Parent Group Meeting (PGM) referral is made to the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office. This office will send a letter to the child’s parent. At 9 days, of unexcused absences an ‘educational neglect report’ is sent to Hennepin County.

Tardiness:  It is vital that students arrive to school on time. Some of the most important information and community building take place the first 20 minutes of class. By 9:50 am, instruction in core curriculum begins. Students need to be present every day for this valuable time. Six tardies will count as an unexcused absence.