New Portales High School harsh attendance policy - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

New Portales High School harsh attendance policy

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Portales, New Mexico - Students in eastern New Mexico might want to think twice before calling in sick.

Portales High School will be changing its truancy policy to include harsher punishments for absent students and their parents.

These punishments could include counseling time in teen court, and up to six months of jail time for parents.

Assistant principal Arturo Ontiveros says 91-percent of the high school's students are in attendance on a regular basis.

And when a student reaches 10 unexcused absences, they and their parents will be prosecuted through the District Attorney's office.

Arturo Ontiveros says, "we're trying to get more parent involvement and that's the whole reason for involving magistrate court. It's not just the school calling and bugging the parents saying hey, you're kids not in school. What's going on? now we've involved the judicial system a little bit. And parents, they are obligated to attend."

The new truancy policy will be a trial one year program to see if it improves overall attendance.