Text Box: Chapel Hill Elementary School
Dawn Kirby, Principal
415 South Horton Parkway
Chapel Hill, TN 37034
(931) 246-4255-Telephone
(931) 246-4252-Fax


Welcome to Chapel Hill Elementary School, home of the “Rocketeers”.  The faculty and staff are committed to excellence and with a shared partnership; each student will receive the training that is so essential in these formative years.

You are always welcome to visit us at CHES, and if I may be of any service to you or your child, please feel free to contact me.  Let’s join forces and let the educational experiences of our students be both enjoyable and beneficial.

Dawn Kirby

Dawn Kirby


Mission Statement
Our mission is to work in partnership with the community to provide a safe and secure learning environment in which students will be challenged and can develop the skills necessary to achieve success in their secondary education and lifelong goals.

Success and Nothing Less at CHES!

CHES is a K-3 community school.  Our aim is to provide each student with varied learning experiences which will prepare him/her for a pluralistic society.  Therefore, our school cultivates the intellectual, social, moral, aesthetic, and physical qualities of individual students.
To prepare students for the challenges of an ever changing society, attention is given to providing a sound foundation of basic skills and knowledge that will enable the student to progress from level to level throughout the system and to enter secondary activities.
Through experiences beginning in the primary grades, each student is encouraged to develop responsibility, values, and respect for the rights of others.  At all grade levels, we encourage the ability to think and communicate critically, as well as creatively.  To implement these goals, we believe that discipline is essential to the maintenance of a learning environment and to the personal growth of each student.
Since we have a community school, a tradition-rich environment will continue.  A sense of belonging to a strong school community fosters school pride and nurtures academic success.  We feel there should be a free exchange of ideas among the principal, faculty, students, and community in implementing, expanding, and improving every facet of our school.

Main Objectives
The three main objectives of Chapel Hill Elementary School are to insure: (1) Academics, (2) Attendance, and (3) Discipline.
To help each of you accomplish these objectives, the administration strongly suggests you follow these three simple rules: 
Be where you are supposed to be,
Do what you are supposed to do, 
Be there on time.

Marshall County Elementary Attendance Policy 6.200
Attendance is a key factor in student achievement and therefore, students are expected to be present each day school is in session. The attendance supervisor shall oversee the entire attendance program which shall include: 1. All accounting and reporting procedures and their dissemination; 2. Alternative program options for students who severely fail to meet minimum attendance requirements; and 3. Ensuring that all school-age children attend school.

Absences shall be classified as either excused or unexcused as determined by the principal or assistant principal. Professional documentation shall be required. 
Excused absences will be divided into three (3) categories: 
I. Medical Excuses:  Students must provide valid documentation for absences which details accurate dates of illness (this includes doctors, dentists, and/or health care agencies). Upon returning to school, a student has three (3) school days in which to submit a note. After three (3) days, the absence(s) will become permanently unexcused.   
II. Personal Days:  Secondary students (grades 7-12) will be allowed three (3) excused personal days per semester and elementary students (grades K-6) will be allowed five (5) excused personal days per semester. These days will cover the following types of absences; however, proper documentation must be presented to the office in order for the absence to be excused: 
Personal illnesses, serious family illness or family emergency – (a note from the student’s 
parent/guardian or legal custodian will be required for the student’s returning to school). The note should include the reason(s) for and the date(s) of the absence. Upon returning to school, a student has three (3) school days in which to submit a note. After three (3) days, the absence(s) will become permanently unexcused. 
B. Deaths- In the family – One (1) day will be excused. Additional days will be excused at the discretion of the principal (program or death notice is required upon return to school) of others – The principal may excuse absences with appropriate documentation. 
C. Religious Holidays/Retreats – Religious holidays will be excused with proper documentation from the parent. Religious retreats must be pre-authorized by the principal with documentation from religious church/agency sponsoring the retreat. 
D. Appearance in court (documentation from a court official will be required as documentation). 
E. Extreme weather conditions. 
F. School sponsored or endorsed activities. 
III. Principal’s Discretion: Absences involving extenuating or unusual circumstances may be approved or pre-approved by the principal on a case-by-case basis. 
Any absence without a note is automatically an unexcused absence.

General:  Annually, the Director of Schools/designee will provide written notice to parent(s)/guardian(s) that attendance at school is required. Students shall be present at least fifty percent (50%) of the scheduled school day in order to be counted present. Students may attend part-time days, alternating days, or for a specific amount of time as indicated in their Individualized Education Plan or 504 Plan and shall be considered present for school attendance purposes. If a student is required to participate in a remedial instruction program outside of the regular school day where there is no cost to the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the school system provides transportation, unexcused absences from these programs shall be reported in the same manner. 
A student who is absent five (5) days without adequate excuse shall be reported to the Director of Schools/designee who will, in turn, provide written notice to the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the student’s absence. If a parent does not provide documentation within adequate time excusing those absences, or request an attendance hearing, then the Director of Schools shall implement the progressive truancy intervention plan described below prior to referral to juvenile court.  Prior to referral to juvenile court, the following progressive truancy intervention plan will be implemented.
Tier I  
Tier I of the progressive truancy intervention plan is triggered at three (3) unexcused absences and shall include the following:  
1. A scheduled/attempted conference with the student and the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s); 
2. An attendance contract, based on the conference, signed by the student, the parent(s)/guardian(s), and an attendance supervisor or designee. The contract shall include:  
a. A specific description of the school’s attendance expectations for the student;  
b. The period for which the contract is effective; and  
c. Penalties for additional absences and alleged school offenses, including additional disciplinary action and potential referral to juvenile court; and  
3. Regularly scheduled follow-up meetings to discuss the student’s progress. 
Tier II  
If a student accumulates additional unexcused absences in violation of the attendance contract in Tier I, the student will be subject to Tier II.  
Under this tier, a school employee shall conduct an individualized assessment detailing the reasons a student has been absent from school. The employee may refer the student to counseling, community based services, or other services to address the student’s attendance problems.
Tier III 
This tier shall be implemented if the truancy interventions under Tier II are unsuccessful. Students will be cited to the Marshall County Schools Truancy Board.  
Interventions/Recommendations shall be determined by the Marshall County Schools Truancy Board. The interventions shall address student needs in an age-appropriate manner. Finalized plans shall be approved by the Director of Schools/designee.  
After five (5) unexcused absences and the progressive truancy intervention have been attempted, the student/parent will be referred to Juvenile Court.

Military Service of Parent/Guardian
School principals shall provide students with a one-day excused absence prior to the deployment of and a one-day excused absence upon the return of a parent or custodian serving active military service. Principals shall also allow up to ten (10) excused cumulative absences per year for students to visit a parent or guardian during a deployment cycle. The student shall provide documentation to the school as proof of his/her parent’s/guardian’s deployment. Students shall be permitted to make up schoolwork missed during these absences. 

Credit Promotion/Denial
Credit/Promotion denial determinations may include student attendance; however, student attendance may not be the sole criterion.  However, if attendance is a factor, prior to credit/promotion denial, the following shall occur: 1. Parents and students shall be advised if a student is in danger of credit/promotion denial due to excessive absenteeism. 2. Procedures in due process are available to the student when credit or promotion is denied. 

Out-of-School Suspension days are likewise unexcused absences.

The principal shall be responsible for ensuring that: 1. Attendance is checked and reported daily for each class; 2. Daily absentee sheets contain sign in/sign out sheets and indicate students present or absent for the majority of the day; 3. All student absences are verified; 4. Written excuses are submitted for absences and tardiness; 5. System-wide procedures for accounting and reporting are followed; and  6. Students who are absent five (5) days without adequate excuse shall be reported to the director of schools/designee who will, in turn, provide written notice to the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the student’s absence. The director of schools/designee shall also comply with state law regarding the reporting of truant students to the proper authorities. 

Tardies/Early Dismissal/Detention
Truancy is defined as an unexcused absence for an entire school day, a major portion of the school day or any portion of any class, study hall or activity during the school day for which the student is scheduled. Any student who misses more than fifteen (15) minutes of a class period will be counted as absent.  
A tardy is defined as a late check in or an early check out from school.  
After five (5) unexcused tardies, parents will receive written notice from school as a warning that further unexcused tardies will result in a summons to the Marshall County Schools Tardy Review Board. After a student reaches eight (8) unexcused tardies, parents will be summoned to appear before the Tardy Review Board. After a subsequent unexcused tardy, parents may be charged with Educational Neglect in the Marshall County Juvenile Court. Tardies continue to accumulate during the second semester.  They DO NOT start over after the winter break.  If you have ever been to the Tardy Review Board, that step will be skipped and you will be summoned straight to Juvenile Court. 
Please note: Elementary students receive five parent notes per semester. Parent notes can be used for unexcused tardies.

Rules and Penalties
1. A student must present documentation of his/her absence and receive a class admittance note before entering class. Documentation must be turned in within three (3) school days from the date the student returns to school, or the absences will be unexcused.  
2. All missed classwork and tests (whether from an excused or unexcused absence) may be made up if the student makes the request immediately upon returning to school and if class time is not taken. Requests for make-up work made prior to the first bell must be provided by the teacher(s) by 3:00 p.m. the same day. Make-up work must be completed and returned to the teacher within one day per absence. 
3. Time spent in before-school or after-school detention is for disciplinary purposes and will not be construed as make-up time. Under no circumstances will detention time be substituted for class time and/or work missed. 
4. If a student has an illness that requires hospitalization exceeding ten (10) school days, the student, or his/her parent/guardian may apply to the Special Populations Supervisor for a “homebound” teacher to provide instruction. 
5. The principal shall be responsible for notifying in writing the director of schools and the parents of the student of any action taken by the school.
6. A student participating in a school-sponsored activity, whether on or off campus, will not be counted absent. The student will be eligible to make up all work missed and will receive full credit for the assignment upon completion of the work. To qualify as “school-sponsored”, the activity must be school-planned, school-directed, and supervised by an approved sponsor. 
7. Mass exodus, early dismissal, or late arrival of all students, or any segment of students, will not be permitted for any reason except for emergencies such as inclement weather or other unavoidable situations, unless instruction time is made up in full. 
8. Student attendance records will be given the same level of confidentiality as other student records. Only authorized school officials engaged in legitimate educational purposes may have access to student information without the express consent of the parent or guardian, if the student is a minor, or the student, if he or she has attained the age of eighteen (18). 
9. Foreign exchange students will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis by the principal. 

Students with excessive (more than five (5)) unexcused absences or those in danger of credit/promotion denial shall have the opportunity to appeal to an attendance hearing committee appointed by the principal. If the student chooses to appeal, the student or his/her parent(s)/guardian(s) shall be provided written or actual notice of the appeal hearing and shall be given the opportunity to address the committee. The committee will conduct a hearing to determine if any extenuating circumstances exist to excuse an absence(s) or to determine if the student has met attendance requirements that will allow him/her to pass the course or be promoted. Upon notification of the attendance committee decision, the principal shall send written notification to the Director of Schools/designee and the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the student of any action taken regarding the excessive unexcused absences. The notification shall advise parent(s)/guardian(s) of their right to appeal such action within two (2) school days to the Director of Schools/designee.  
The appeal shall be heard no later than ten (10) school days after the request for appeal is received.  Within five (5) school days of the Director of Schools/designee rendering a decision, the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) may request a hearing by the Board, and the Board shall review the record.  Following the review, the Board may affirm or overturn the decision of the Director of Schools/designee. The action of the Board shall be final.  The Director of Schools/designee shall ensure that this policy is posted in each school building and disseminated to all students, parents, teachers, and administrative staff.  MCSS Policy 6.200

A note from Judge Lee Bussart
Dear Parent or Guardian:
	Please be informed by this letter that you are responsible for ensuring proper school attendance for the child under 18 years of age in your care and custody.
	A child is considered truant after acquiring five (5) unexcused absences from school. If your child accrues three (3) unexcused absences, you and your child will be referred to the Marshall County Truancy Board.  Failure to appear or comply with the Board’s recommendation will result in a summons to the Marshall County Juvenile Court.
	If your child is found to be truant by the Marshall County Juvenile Court, you should expect to perform 48 hours of community service work. If you appear for a second offense of truancy, you should expect to be sentenced to 48 hours in the Marshall County Jail for failure to comply with Compulsory School Attendance Law. The Court may impose more severe penalties for continued offenses.
	The Juvenile Court will support you and the Marshall County School System to achieve educational success for your child. Thank you for your dedication to your child’s future.
					Judge Lee Bussart 
Immunization Records and Beginning School
	No students entering school, including those entering kindergarten or first grade, those from out-of-state and those from nonpublic schools, will be permitted to enroll (or attend) without proof of immunization, as determined by the Commissioner of Public Health.  It is the responsibility of the parents or guardians to have their children immunized and to provide such proof to the principal or designee of the school which the student is to attend. MCSS Policy 6.402  Please keep your child’s shot record up to date.  Other state requirements are 1.  Legal Birth Certificate, 2.  Social Security Card, 3.  Tennessee Child Health Record, 4. Current Physical Exam, 5. Proof of Residence in Marshall County, 6. Photo ID of custodial parent/guardian  To enter kindergarten a student must be at least five (5) years of age before August 15 of that school year; however, one does not have to enter school at age five (5).  Developmental factors other than age are important to assure a successful first experience at school.  (A developmental factor is an ability that develops at different times for each individual over which we have no control, such as walking or talking.)  For school purposes, important factors include things such as time one can stay on task while working in a large group, ability to follow more than one direction, ability to sit and listen for a period of time, ability to finish a task without an adult, etc.  Kindergarten teachers can assist parents in determining Kindergarten readiness.  

Morning Procedures
 The school day begins at 7:40a.m.  The building will not open and children will not be supervised until 7:00a.m.  Please do not leave children unattended at CHES.  When dropping off car riders, do not park in the parking lot and walk your child across the street.  Also, do not park in the parking lot and allow your child to walk alone across the street to enter the school. All car riders should enter the building through the double doors next to the library. Bus riders will unload and enter at the rear of the building.  Car riders and bus riders that arrive prior to 7:30a.m. will report to the playroom.  Students will sit quietly in their designated grade areas.  If a student plans to eat breakfast, he or she will report to the cafeteria upon arrival at school.  Be sure to drop your child off to allow enough time to eat breakfast and report to class by 7:40.  ALL students will report to their classrooms to begin their school day by 7:40a.m. 
CHES and DHIS share entrance and exit drives.  Please plan to arrive at CHES first and then DHIS if you have students attending both schools.  Drop-off and pick-up of students whose parents/guardians will need to go to both schools must use the south loop at CHES.  Do not return to CHES traffic to exit the campuses after picking up at DHIS.

After School Dismissal
For the safety of your child, if there is a change in transportation, please send a note with your child.  Please call the school office by 12:00p.m. for emergency transportation changes only.  Students will not be allowed to change buses unless it is an emergency. 
 Bus riders will be dismissed at 2:40p.m. from the rear of the building.  Car riders and walkers will be dismissed at 2:40p.m. from the front of the building ONLY, and must be picked up promptly.  K-1 will dismiss from the south end (main entrance) and 2-3 from the north end (library entrance).  Students in grades 2-3 who have younger siblings in school, will walk to the south entrance to load with their younger sibling along with all CHES students that will be going to DHIS to pick up after CHES.  Do not return to CHES traffic to exit the campuses after picking up at DHIS.
 DO NOT park in the parking lot and walk across to pick up your child or expect your child to be sent across the traffic to you.  Pull in to the designated loading zone for pick up.   Your child will not be dismissed until you are in the loading zone.  The teachers will bring your child to the car.  Please remain in your car.  If you need to speak with a teacher, please pick up your child first, then park in the visitors’ lot, and wait until the loading area is cleared.  For safety purposes do not allow your child to get out of the car once loaded.  
Please make arrangements to pick up your child up by 2:50p.m.  Any child remaining at school after 2:50p.m. will wait for their ride in the CHES lobby or office.    The parents must park his or her car and come inside the school to pick up the child.   Persistent disregard of this rule will be reported to the proper authority.

Early Dismissal
We encourage you to try to schedule your child’s appointments around school hours. If this is not possible, please come to the office to pick up your child.  Permission from the parent is needed if a person other than the parent is picking up the child.  The parent or responsible party must sign the student out in the office.  Please understand the safety measure and be prepared to show proper identification.

Perfect Attendance
Perfect attendance awards will be given each nine weeks.  The award is given to students with no absences, tardies, or early dismissals from the first day of school through the last.

School Closings
In the event of severe weather or mechanical breakdown, the school may be closed, starting time delayed, or dismissed early.  Any such circumstances will be announced over all local radio (WJJM-94.3 FM) and television stations.  If no report is heard, it may be assumed that school will be open on time.

Greetings, Absence Policies, etc.