Student Attendance Policy
Students must not be absent more than 10 days per semester. Excessive absences, as determined by the Principal and/or Head of School, may result in the penalty of students requiring detention and/or financial penalties. Families with serious medical conditions, extra extraordinary circumstances, or other emergency situations may be allowed to submit a written plea for consideration of which will be submitted to the BIS Local Board for final approval. Parents should consider the school start dates and holiday schedule when planning family trips to avoid accumulating unnecessary absences.
BIS students are expected to attend school every day and come to class prepared and on time. Promptness and regularity are essential characteristics for success in life as well as in school. Absenteeism creates a loss to the student even when such absence is excused and work is made up. Because attendance is an integral part of the educational process, student learning will be more successful if attendance is of primary importance to all involved. It should be noted that traditional truancy laws that teachers may be accustomed to in the U.S. do not apply to the BIS parameters set forth in Brazil.
Excused Student Absences
Absences related to sickness, injury, approved academic trips or unexpected events such as a death in the family may be counted as excused at the principal’s discretion. Students will receive credit for work if an absence is excused. Excused absences still count toward the 10 days allowed per semester. For excused absences the student will be given one day for every excused day absent to makeup missed work. Because attendance is an integral part of the educational process, student learning will be more successful if attendance is of primary importance to all involved. If students are habitually absent the Principal, Team Leader, or Head of School will contact the parents to set up a meeting along with the student(s) to discuss ways to improve attendance.
Prearranged Student Absences
To best prepare for making up work that will be missed during an extended absence of three days or more, parents should obtain a prearranged absence form and consult with the Principal or designated team leader to make arrangements for the absence. Making arrangements does not automatically ensure that an absence will be excused. BIS does not excuse absences for leisure travel so please be sure to plan family vacations during school Holidays. The Principal and/or Head of School will make the final decision on whether or not a pre-arranged absence is excused of which teachers must accommodate.
CLICK HERE for the Prearranged Absence Form
Students must make-up missed work and tests for all absences. The teacher will deduct percentage points off according to what has been outlined in their course syllabus to determine the grade for missed assignments submitted the teacher’s deadline following an unexcused absence. Students will be responsible to make-up exams or alternative assessments at the teacher’s discretion. Students who miss class due to suspension as a behavioral consequence will not receive credit for missed assignments. Missed exams or projects will be made up and then marked down by school grading policy.
Additional Attendance Procedures
A parent or guardian must contact the school office each day by phone or email if their student will be absent, indicating the reason for the absence by 10:00am. A student who is in in-school suspension or out-of-school suspension may not participate in any extracurricular practices or games during that suspension.
All students who arrive late to school will stop at the school office to report their tardy. The definition of late or tardy will involve any student who arrives inside the campus gates after 8:00 am. The student(s) will receive a student pass to class. The tardy will be recorded in PowerSchool by the homeroom teacher. If this type of tardy persists, except in the case of the late arrival of a contracted bus, the Principal or Team Leader may deem it necessary to contact or have a conference with the parent or guardian.
Tardiness for Secondary Students
Students must arrive on time to each of their schedules classes or will be considered tardy. Students should refer to their class syllabus for additional tardy guidelines that may be outlined in each course. Secondary students will receive additional consequences for tardies that will include receiving a detention for every 3rd tardy in a class per quarter as issued by the teacher and enforced by a Team Leader/Principal. Students will be referred to the Principal/Team Leader if the tardies become excessive to the point they have been assigned more than 3 detentions a quarter.
Length of Day & School Year
The normal day for ELC 3 through 12th grade begins at 8:00 am and ends at 3:15 pm. The normal school day ends at 11:55 am for half day ELC 3 and 3:15 pm for full day ELC 3. The typical school year at BIS coincides with the American educational system. Semester 1 begins in early August and runs until mid-December. Semester 2 begins in mid-January and runs until mid-June. The school year typically has 180 days the students are in class for more than half the day. Teacher and staff in-service times are adjusted yearly by the administration.
Early Dismissal Days
On school-wide early dismissal days, school dismisses at 12:00 pm, unless otherwise noted. BIS has four quarters and a minimum of 180 school days per academic year.