NEW MADRID, MO (KFVS) - New Madrid Schools have implemented a new attendance policy. Some parents say the new policy is unfair to students who have medical needs. School officials say the policy is for the good of the students and the school.
"We want students to be successful in their academic achievement and in order to provide the best possible education for our students, attendance is a must," Superintendent Dr. Cindy Amick said.
Under the new policy, students are allowed to miss five days of school per semester, no matter the reason. After that, they are required to attend "eighth hour" to make up the missed class time.
Some parents are asking school officials to reconsider the policy.
"I love the school, I can't ask for a better school, but I just don't think that they have the right to say that doctor's notes don't mean anything," Courtney Burnes said.
Burnes says if her son were required to attend eighth hour, that'd cut into family time.
"That's the only time we have, that few hours. Bedtime is early. You have dinner, you have baths. That's cutting into family time," Burnes said.
Other parents agree.
"When you have a doctor, which is state certified, or a therapist or somebody like that saying 'Hey, this child doesn't need to be in school.' Why is that child being punished because they can't go?" Carla Dutton said. "It just doesn't make any sense."
Dutton's child has medical needs that require her to miss school.
"When I explained to her that my daughter has to have dental surgery, they said she will have to make up the days," Dutton said. "So, there are absolutely no exceptions to it at all unless they're receiving state mandated services."
Dr. Amick says students who are homebound for medical reasons will have a teacher sent to their house. This would not count as a missed day.