thinking about attendance

I heard from a parent yesterday with questions about attendance (keep in mind only 7th grade counts in the HS process - high schools see nothing from 8th grade) and wanted to share more info here. 


The magic number is generally 10. Less than 10 latenesses or absences is OK, anything more than that raises a red flag to high schools. Just to be on the safe side I checked in with a high school principal last night who said that yes that is still the case. But, as I will continue to mention, every high school school treats the admissions process differently.

Back in the olden days, when I was going through this process myself (my son is currently a junior and my daughter is a college sophomore) we went by information in the high school handbook and didn’t know there was more out there when it came to schools ranking students.  But, as I also often mention, the landscape keeps shifting and there ha been a move towards more transparency from individual schools about how they rank kids. This information is supposed to be public and you will find some schools post on their websites or hand out that info in person.  You can absolutely ask about this on tours or at open houses. But not everyone will share. Some schools keep this info under lock and key and parents have no idea how they actually rank students.

Here is how Brooklyn Millennium ranks kids:

Their system is remarkably kid specific. They use point systems within percentages to rank. These numbers are theirs alone. Every single school creates its own system. To bring this full circle, according to Brooklyn Millennium’s rubric, it’s a combination of 10 lates and absences that raises a red flag:

Yes, there’s such a thing as an excused lateness or absence for medical or other extenuating circumstances. Head’s up: if your child has any of those, check in with you middle school and MAKE SURE they’ve been coded properly into the system. Those should not be counted against a student.