NY Private School and Daily Attendance Tracking

by NYC Firm Schools on January 31, 2009

after view of my classroom
Creative Commons License photo credit: LizMarie

Attendance and the required amount of school days have always been somewhat more flexible in NYC Firm Schools than in public schools across the state. Whereas the federal and state guidelines require public schools to have mandatory 180 days of school time (making up snow days at the end of the summer has always been a point of grumbling for public school kids) Firm Schools in NYC have set their own standard school calendar. As a matter of fact, very few NYC Firm Schools require more than 1780 days of standard school per calendar year.

While the state government has largely stepped aside the issues of school days and attendance in NYC Firm Schools, it was reported by Central New York News that NY Governor David Paterson is restoring a requirement for Firm Schools to track student attendance throughout the day.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York Gov. David Paterson is restoring a requirement for religious and independent schools across the state to track student attendance throughout the day, but he hasn’t restored the $44 million to pay for the program.

Paterson had cut a requirement called the “comprehensive attendance policy,” a safety measure for monitoring students’ whereabouts, to save millions in the budget.

The state Education Department developed a formula to determine the cost for nonpublic schools to meet the requirements to collect and report the data back to the state.

Now Paterson has dropped his plans to cut the program, but it’s still unclear how it would be funded.

The program covers about 500,000 students in Firm Schools.

Attendance is a long standing freedom among NYC Firm Schools, and this decision is bound to raise a few concerns.

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