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Attendance State Policy


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Daily attendance and engagement in learning is essential to student success at all grade levels.  Colorado law directly connected to attendance focuses on compulsory school attendance, truancy and school finance. Important student attendance definition of rates and terms include:

Truancy: Truancy is defined as an unexcused absence.  The rate is calculated by dividing the reported Total Student Days Unexcused Absences by the Total Student Days Possible.

Habitually Truant (Student Count): A student is counted as habitually truant if the student has four unexcused absences in one month and/or 10 absences in one school year.

Chronically Absent: A student absent 10 percent or more of the days enrolled during the school year is chronically absent. All absences are included – unexcused, excused and suspensions.  The rate is the percentage of students enrolled who are chronically absent.



As part of Colorado’s state ESSA plan, CDE uses student level attendance data as part of the calculation for Comprehensive Support.  To learn more about ESSA in Colorado, please click here

District policy

Each school district board of education in Colorado has responsibility to maintain policy outlining components of their attendance system including the following items that are outlined in Colorado Statute 22-33-107:

  • Policies and procedures for elementary and secondary school attendance including plans to support students who are not in attendance.
  • Procedures to monitor attendance and support students with high numbers of absences.
  • Procedures for notification to parents about attendance policies and when a student is not in attendance.

Colorado Attendance Law and Board Rule

School Attendance Act – Residence of child (§22-1-102, C.R.S.)

  • Every public school shall be open for the admission of all children, between the ages of five and twenty-one years, residing in that district without the payment of tuition.

School Attendance Act – Compulsory School Attendance (§22-33-104, C.R.S.)

  • Requires that each child between the ages of six and 17 shall attend public school unless otherwise excused. 

Standardizing Truancy Reporting and Expanding the Resources (§22-33-104, C.R.S.)

  • Requires the Colorado State Board of Education to adopt guidelines for the standardized calculation of unexcused absences of students from school.

School Attendance Law of 1963 - Truancy Court (§19-1-104, C.R.S.)

  • Allows a criminal justice agency investigating a matter under the "School Attendance Law of 1963" to seek, prior to adjudication, disciplinary and truancy information from the juvenile's school.

Truancy enforcement (§22-33-107, C.R.S.)

  • Requires school district to have policy for a truancy plan with the goal of assisting the child to remain in school.

FINANCE ACT OF 1994 (§22-54-103, C.R.S.)

  • “Pupil enrollment" means the number of pupils enrolled on the pupil enrollment count day within the applicable budget year, as evidenced by the actual attendance of such pupils prior to said date.


  • 1-ccr 301-78: Standardized calculation for counting student attendance and truancy