Attendance - Arrival and Dismissal
Arrival and Departure
7:35 AM Arrival-Students allowed in building/classrooms at this time. Students will not be permitted into the building prior to 7:35 AM; there is no adult supervision until then.
7:50 AM Tardy bell rings to start the day
2:00 PM Dismissal
School Office Hours 7:00 AM - 3:00 PM Teacher Schedule 7:30 AM - 2:45 PM
Because Bellflower is located on a main highway, all students are expected to ride the school bus each day.
A school bus is an extension of the classroom, and the Board of Education requires children to conduct themselves on the bus in a manner consistent with established standards for classroom behavior.
Specific bus transportation rules can be found in The Code of Conduct.
In cases when a child does not conduct himself properly on a bus, such instances are to be brought to the attention of the Principal or a designee by the bus driver. Children who become a disciplinary problem on the school bus may have their riding privileges suspended by the principal. Before a suspension from the bus is imposed, the principal will provide a student with notice of an intended suspension and an opportunity to appear before the designee. In such cases, the parents of the children involved become responsible for seeing that their children get to and from school safely.
Riding a Different Bus
Students are not permitted to depart from their regularly assigned bus; however, we are pleased to assist parents in the event that an emergency or child care situation occurs that necessitates a change in bus transportation. Please submit a written request describing the need for the change. A one-day permission slip will be written by the office staff and given to the student. This form serves as permission to board the bus. We are unable to provide transportation to individual social events, scouting, etc.
No staff member shall excuse any pupil from school prior to the end of the school day, or into any person’s custody, without the direct prior approval and knowledge of the building principal. The building principal will not excuse a pupil before the end of the school day without a request for the early dismissal by the student’s parents.
Telephone requests for early dismissal of a pupil shall be honored only if the caller can be positively identified as the pupil’s parent or guardian. Additional precautions will be taken by administration which are appropriate to the age of students, and as needs arise. Justifiable reasons shall be determined by the building administrator.
The office distributes “yellow dismissal pads” to each family at the start of the school year. Please use the yellow forms to communicate with the school to avoid confusion. If you run out during the year, a new pad can be requested by contacting the school office at 440-255-4212.
If one parent has been awarded custody of the student by the courts, the parent of custody shall provide the school with a copy of the custody order and inform the school in writing of any limitations in the rights of the non-custodial parent. Without a custody order, the school will presume that the student may be released
into the care of either parent. No student shall be released to anyone whose name is not on file in the building.
Written permission is needed for anyone other than a student’s parent/guardian to pick up that child from school. Please contact the office with questions regarding this policy. All individuals picking up students will be asked to show identification.
The school must have written notification from a parent or guardian anytime a child will not be going home according to his/her regular method as established by the transportation department. The school will always err on the side of safety when written notification has not been provided.
Example situations include: If a parent wishes to pick up a child immediately after school and that child normally rides a bus, a note must be sent to the teacher stating this change. If a child regularly attends We Care and for some reason won’t be there on a particular afternoon, the school must be notified.
Please avoid last minute calls to school personnel regarding changes to dismissal. Adequate time is needed to communicate changes, and last-minute notification makes this difficult. Should an emergency arise, and dismissal plans need to be changed, call the office at 440-255-4212. Do not email the teacher or office. A phone call is guaranteed to be received and recorded while an email may not be read until after the school day ends.
Late Entry to School
Students are late if they are not in their seat and ready to start the day at 7:50 AM.
Students who arrive after 7:50 AM must be walked to the front door by a parent or guardian.
Student Pick Up
Student “pick up” refers to any student leaving the school grounds with a supervising adult. Under no circumstances will a student be dismissed to a waiting car in the parking lot. When picking up a student, please be sure to park in the parking lot so as not to interfere with school or daycare buses.
During the school day, if a child needs to leave for an appointment, the student will be called to the office to meet his/her parent. When arriving to pick up children from school, parents must press the buzzer at the front doors and wait for the office staff to bring their child down to the front door.
At the end of the day, all parents picking up children shall park in the parking lot and enter the building through the playground doors. Doors will open at approximately 2:05 PM. Parents will then sign their child out from the supervisor. Students will wait in the designated location until their parent/guardian arrives. Parents/guardians should be prepared to provide identification.
No student will be released to anyone other than a parent/guardian without proper written notification from a parent/guardian.
The Bellflower staff, administration, and the Mentor Board of Education believe that regular class attendance and punctuality are necessary if students are to receive adequate instruction and guidance through their course work and benefit from the group dynamics within a class. Frequent absences disrupt the instructional process by breaking the continuity of instruction and by preventing pupil interaction and classroom participation in learning activities.
School attendance laws in the State of Ohio require each child between the ages of six and eighteen attend school for the full time the school is in session. It is important for your child to attend school every day. When your student misses a significant amount of school, even if the absences are excused, the child misses critical instruction time and learning opportunities. This often has long-term, negative effects on a child, such as lower achievement and a greater chance of not graduating on time. A new state law defines excessive absence and truancy.
House Bill 410 / Excessive Absenteeism
In December 2016, the Ohio General Assembly passed House Bill 410 to encourage and support a proactive approach to excessive absences and truancy. After careful review, the Mentor School District has implemented guidelines contained in House Bill 410 in order to help support academic success of our students and partner with families to identify and reduce barriers to regular school attendance (effective Aug. 2017).
- Definition of Truancy and Excessive Absences*
- Absent 30 or more consecutive hours without a legitimate excuse (5 days for both elementary and secondary);
- Absent 42 or more hours in one school month without a legitimate excuse (7 days for elementary, 6 days for secondary);
- Absent 72 or more hours in one school year without a legitimate excuse (12 for elementary, 11 for secondary);
- Definition of “excessive absences”
- Absent 38 or more hours in one school month with or without a legitimate excuse (7 days for elementary, 6 days for secondary);
- Absent 65 or more hours in one school year with or without a legitimate excuse (11 days for elementary, 10 days for secondary)
- Definition of “chronic absenteeism”
- Absent 92 or more hours with or without a legitimate excuse (16 days for elementary, 14 days for secondary)
*Notifications to the family will be sent prior to the triggering absences above through Infinite Campus messages.
If a student is “habitually truant” our district will follow these guidelines to work with the student and their families.
- Within seven calendar days of the triggering absences, our absence intervention team will notify the family in writing.
- Within ten calendar days of the triggering absence, the student will be assigned to an absence intervention team that will include two district representatives and the child’s parent or guardian. If families are not responsive to at least three good faith attempts by the district to engage them in the absence intervention team process, the district may file a report to the county children services agency for abuse or neglect.
- Within 14 school days after the assignment of the team, a student-centered absence intervention plan will be developed with and for the student containing an agreed-upon strategy for getting the student to school every day and may provide supportive services to families that could include counseling, education and parenting programs, mediation, or intervention programs available through juvenile authorities.
- If the student does not make progress on the plan or continues to be excessively absent, the district will file a complaint in the juvenile court.
It is important for every student in Ohio to attend school every day. Missing too much school has long-term, negative effects on students, such as lower achievement and graduation rates. There are many reasons students miss school - we want to make sure we are identifying and supporting students who may need extra support and services. Our goal is to help increase attendance rates to help students’ progress in mastering knowledge and skills necessary to graduate from high school prepared for higher education and the workforce.
In accordance with Board Policy 6.08 – A student must be in attendance at school for half of the school day in order to participate in any school-sponsored activity that is conducted on that day; in cases of emergency the principal or his/her designee may grant an exception to this limitation.
The principal or his or her designee may request written verification of a student’s illness from a physician licensed to practice medicine in the state of Ohio in the event of frequent or extended absences attributed to personal illness.
Reporting Absences and Tardies
Please notify the school no later than 8:15 AM at 440-255-4212 if your child will be absent or tardy. For safety purposes, all children must be accounted for early each day. The Bellflower office staff will call parents who have not reported an absence. An absence will be considered unexcused until parent verification of the absence has been received.
Absence calls may be placed at any time. Voicemail is available prior to 7:00 AM and after 3:00 PM. If the office is closed, please leave a message and state the reason for your child’s absence and the teacher’s name. After the second day of absence, if you would like homework for your child, please state with whom you would like it sent.
Prearranged Absences and Vacations
Parents are encouraged to plan family vacations to correspond with school vacations. Vacations that interfere with school attendance should be discussed with the school administrator and teacher well in advance of the vacation. There are times that a student’s absence for reasons other than illness is unavoidable. If the parent is aware of an upcoming absence, a Prearranged Absence Form should be requested from the office staff.
A written request using the Prearranged Absence Form must be completed at least five school days in advance. Whether the absence is excused or unexcused is at the administrator’s discretion based on: timeliness and completion of the Prearranged Absence Form, the student’s attendance history, the number of previous absences in the given school year, whether the student is in good academic standing and reason for the absence as it pertains to Mentor Board of Education Policy 6.08.