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Parents

Attendance Policy

Absences

It is the parent’s responsibility to report each and every absence. Please call the school office before 9:00 am and provide the student’s name and grade level and the reason for the absence.   You can also use the online portal to report your child's absence.  We do have an answering machine (24 hours a day) if your call is not answered by office personnel.  In order to obtain the best possible education, it is important that students attend class on a daily basis and arrive on time. Regular classroom participation is necessary to achieve the best possible learning situation for every student. This policy statement has been developed to encourage good attendance and to discourage tardiness. Our goal is to maximize every student’s opportunity to learn. Attendance is the responsibility of parents and students. Students under the age of 16 are required, by law, ARS 15-803, to attend school. A student must attend class regularly to receive a passing grade. A student who is absent from school more than 4.5 days per quarter and whose absence has materially affected academic progress, may receive a lower grade or be retained at the discretion of the school administration

 

Excused Absences:

  • Illness: A doctor's/parent note of reason for absence is required for your student's attendance file.
  • Medical appointments or treatments: Will require a doctor’s note for the student’s attendance file.
  • Religious holidays: A parent note is required for the student’s attendance file
  • Death: A parent note is required for the student’s attendance file.
  • Personal or family emergency: A parent note is required for the student’s attendance file.

Unexcused Absences: (The school administration will determine if an absence is excused or unexcused.)

  • Family vacations.
  • Non-Medical appointments.
  •  Babysitting.
  • Absence for any other reason that does not meet the criteria of an excused absence.
  • A student who is absent from school without notice.

Early Release:

Parents are requested to schedule appointments after 3:15 p.m. to avoid the need for an early dismissal. If it becomes necessary for the student to be released from school for a doctor/dental appointment or other unavoidable emergencies, the following procedure should be followed:

  • Parent/Guardian will need to send a handwritten note to school (or call the school) that states the student’s first and last name, date and time of release, and the reason for the early dismissal. The student is to bring this note to the office before school begins.
  • All students must be signed out by a parent/guardian (or someone designated by the parent/guardian on the emergency card) in the office before leaving the building.
  • The written note will be kept in the students attendance file.

Tardiness:

Being on time is a life skill important to each student’s future, and schools share the responsibility to teach the importance of this skill. Tardiness of individual students interrupts instructional time for all students. Promptness to class allows the teachers to begin the instruction on time for everyone. Tardiness to class is defined as not being physically in the room at 8:00 am.

Donate

As a not-for-profit charter school, donations are eligible for the Arizona Tax Credit of $400 annually for a joint return, or $200 for an individual return. Your donation supports extracurricular programs such as field trips, sports, after-school programs, and playground equipment. To donate online, go to our EasyPay page and select the type of donation you would like to make. To donate by mail or in person instead of online, download the Tax Credit Form. Complete the form, and deliver to Freedom Academy, 3916 E. Paradise Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85032. For more detailed information about the tax credit, Click Here


Information for Enrolled Students

Resources for Parents

Below you will find more detailed information about our policies and procedures, links to online resources, and downloadable forms. Be sure to click each tab to see the resources available.

  • Forms
  • Lunch
  • Absences
  • Uniforms

We are excited to be using the National School Lunch Program this year to provide lunches to our students. All lunches are FREE TO ALL STUDENTS THIS SCHOOL YEAR! YES, FREE!

You MUST order in advance! Don’t wait. Lunch cut-off will always be 7 days prior!!!

ORDER CUT OFF:
Sunday, August 8th at 5:00 p.m. is cut-off for August 16-19
Sunday, August 15th at 5:00 p.m. is cut-off for August 23-27
Sunday, August 22nd at 5:00 p.m. is cut-off for August 30th – September 2nd

To order lunch, Freedom Academy has partnered with BOONLI to provide a secure, fast, and easy-to-use online ordering system that allows you to view the lunch menu and order all from your smartphone or computer. To get started:

  • Go to the BOONLI website https://secure.boonli.com/login
  • If you have an account, please login. If you don't have an account, click the link Create an Account. Enter the Freedom Academy password from your Boonli Welcome Letter or call our office for the password.
  • To finish creating the account, enter your information and click Submit. Then enter your child's info and click Add Profile. Enter student info and click Add Profile for each of your children. Then click I'm Done and Sign In.

For missing or late orders, credits, changes or cancellations, email bgeorge@freedomacademyaz.org or call the school office at 602-424-0771. For help with the Boonli website, email support@boonli.com.

 

Regular school attendance is necessary for a successful school experience.  Instructional continuity is interrupted and the valuable interaction that occurs with teachers and among fellow students is lost when a student is frequently absent, tardy or dismissed early from school.  Realizing that regular attendance in school is necessary for students to gain maximum benefits from public education, Freedom Academy urges all parents/guardians to stress punctuality and regular attendance habits with their children.   School attendance is not only a good habit, state law requires it. Arizona State Law (15-802.A, 15-803.E) requires every person who has custody of a child between the ages of six and sixteen years shall make sure the child attends school for the full time school is in session unless unable to attend due to illness or another legitimate reason.

EXCUSED ABSENCE:

Pursuant to A.R.S. § 15-901(A)(1), excused absences are identified by the Department of Education. The Department of Education defines the following as an excused absence:  illness; doctor appointment; bereavement; family emergencies; religious purposes, and out of school suspensions.

 All absences for reasons other than those cited above will be considered as “unexcused.”   Also, all absences in excess of a cumulative 10% of the instruction days (18 days by the end of the school year) shall be reported as unexcused.

 The state of Arizona requires that all students attend school 90 percent of the school year. A student that is absent more than 10 percent (no more than 18 days by the last day of school) of the required number of school days per year is considered to have “excessive absences,” whether the absence is excused or unexcused.

 All absences (excused or unexcused) must be reported by 9:00 a.m.  You can report an absence by calling the Freedom Academy school office or by using the absence link on our website (www.freedomacademyaz.org).   The school will call to verify an absence in the event that a parent/guardian has not called to report the absence by 9:00 am.

  When a student has accumulated seven (7) or more absences, parents/guardians will receive a letter reiterating the importance of attendance and our policy.

 

When a student has accumulated ten (10) or more absences in a school year, parents/guardians must meet with school administration to complete an attendance contract for improving attendance.

 

        When a child has accumulated eighteen (18) or more absences in a school year, the parent/student can be referred to the Juvenile Court for further disciplinary 

  action.

 Students absent for ten (10) consecutive school days, except for excused absences identified herein, shall be withdrawn from the school, pursuant to A.R.S. §15-901 (A)(2). The governing board may take disciplinary action that may lead to expulsion pursuant to A.R.S. §15-342.

 Tardiness to School

Attendance is taken daily at 8:05 a.m. for all grades. If your student is arriving to school after flag salute, he/she needs to sign in at the front office to receive a tardy pass prior to going to their classroom. Students may sign themselves in.  Parents/guardians are not required to sign the student into school. Students will be given four (4) “grace” tardies in a quarter and then the following consequences will be given:

 5th Unexcused Tardy:  Detention

6th Unexcused Tardy:  Detention

7th Unexcused Tardy:  Phone Call from Principal and Detention

8th Unexcused Tardy:  Phone Call from Principal, In-School Suspension

9th Unexcused Tardy:  Meeting with Principal and Attendance Contract

 

Please note that excessive tardies and/or absences may result in an attendance contract and the student being retained in their current grade. 

 

For more details about our attendance policy, please review our Parent/Student Handbook.

Report An Absence Online

Uniform Bottoms:

All uniform bottoms must be navy blue or khaki and must be from a verified uniform vendor or uniform section of a department store. (Verification of uniform brand will be required at the discretion of administration.) All bottoms must have a regular fitted waistline and no low cut shorts/pants, skinny pants or elastic band ankle pants will be allowed. Bottoms must be loose fit (no stretchy or spandex allowed in the fabric)leg and shorts come to the top of the knee. Pants that are too tight will be considered a dress code violation. Cargo shorts/pants are allowed. Girls will be permitted to wear Skirts/Skorts and Jumpers in navy blue or khaki or the red/blue plaid . All skirts/skorts/jumpers must be worn with a snug fitting bike type short underneath. Skorts and shorts must be worn to the knee.

Uniform Shirts:

All uniform shirts must be purchased from Brisk Apparel ONLY.  Please use link below.  

For more information, please see the official Uniform Policy.  Click here to order uniforms:  BRISK APPAREL

Homeless/Youth in Transition
Education Policy

Homelessness exists in our community. A combination of high housing costs and poverty causes many families to lose their housing. Many young people leave their homes due to abuse, neglect, and family conflict. Children and youth who have lost their housing live in a variety of places, including motels, shelters, shared residences, transitional housing programs, cars, campgrounds, and others. Their lack of permanent housing can lead to potentially serious physical, emotional, and mental consequences. Freedom Academy will ensure that all children and youth receive a free appropriate public education and are given meaningful opportunities to succeed in our schools. Freedom Academy will also follow the requirements of the McKinney-Vento Act.

It is the policy of Feedom Academy to view children as individuals. Therefore, this policy will not refer to children as homeless; it will instead use the term children and youth in transition. Under federal law, children and youth in transition must have access to appropriate public education, including preschool, and be given a full opportunity to meet state and local academic achievement standards. They must be included in state- and district-wide assessments and accountability systems. Our schools will ensure that children and youth in transition are free from discrimination, segregation, and harassment.

Information regarding this policy will be distributed to all students upon enrollment and at least once during the school year, provided to students who seek to withdraw from school, and posted in every school in the district, as well as other places where children, youth, and families in transition receive services, including family and youth shelters, soup kitchens, motels, campgrounds, drop-in centers, welfare departments, health departments, and other social service agencies.

 

 

Definitions

Children and youth in transition means children and youth who are otherwise legally entitled to or eligible for a free public education, including preschool, and who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, including:

• Children and youth who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, campgrounds, or trailer parks due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals.

• Children and youth who have a primary nighttime residence that is a private or public place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.

• Children and youth who are living in a car, park, public space, abandoned building, substandard housing, bus or train station, or similar setting.

• Migratory children and youth who are living in a situation described above.

A child or youth shall be considered to be in transition for as long as he or she is in a living situation described above.

Unaccompanied youth means a youth not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian, who is in transition as defined above. The more general term youth also includes unaccompanied youth.

Enroll and enrollment mean attending school and participating fully in school activities.

Immediate means without delay.

Parent means a person having legal or physical custody of a child or youth.

School of origin means the school the child or youth attended when permanently housed or the school in which the child or youth was last enrolled. Liaison is the staff person designated by our LEA and each LEA in the state as the person responsible for carrying out the duties assigned to the liaison by the McKinney-Vento Act.

Identification

In collaboration with school personnel and community organizations, the liaison will identify children and youth in transition at Freedom Academy, both in and out of school. The liaison will train school personnel on possible indicators of homelessness, sensitivity in identifying families and youth as in transition, and procedures for forwarding information indicating homelessness to the liaison. The liaison will also instruct school registrars and secretaries to inquire about possible homelessness upon the enrollment and withdrawal of every student and to forward information indicating homelessness to the liaison. Community partners in identification may include the following: family and youth shelters, soup kitchens, motels, campgrounds, drop-in centers, welfare departments and other social service agencies, street outreach teams, faith-based organizations, truancy and attendance officers, local homeless coalitions, and legal services.

The liaison will keep data on the number of children and youth in transition at Freedom Academy, where they are living, their academic achievement (including performance on state- and district-wide assessments), and the reasons for any enrollment delays, interruptions in their education, or school transfers.

School Selection

Each child and youth in transition has the right to remain at our school or to attend any school that housed students who live in the attendance area in which the child or youth is actually living. Maintaining a student in his or her school of origin is important for both the student and Freedom Academy. Students who change schools have been found to have lower test scores and overall academic performance than peers who do not change schools. High mobility rates have also been shown to lower test scores for stable students. Keeping students in their schools of origin enhances their academic and social growth, while permitting our schools to benefit from the increased test scores and achievement shown to result from student continuity.

Therefore, in selecting a school, children and youth in transition shall remain at their schools of origin to the extent feasible, unless that is against the parent or youth’s wishes. Students may remain at their schools of origin the entire time they are in transition and until the end of any academic year in which they become permanently housed. The same applies if a child or youth loses his or her housing between academic years.

Feasibility shall be a child-centered determination, based on the needs and interests of the particular student and the parent or youth’s wishes. Potential feasibility considerations include:

• Safety of the student

• Continuity of instruction

• Likely area of family or youth’s future housing

• Time remaining in the academic year

• Anticipated length of stay in temporary living situation

• School placement of siblings

• Whether the student has special needs that would render the commute harmful

Services that are required to be provided, including transportation to and from the school of origin and services under federal and other programs, shall not be considered in determining feasibility.

Enrollment

Consistent, uninterrupted education is vital for academic achievement. Due to the realities of homelessness and mobility, students in transition may not have school enrollment documents readily available. Nonetheless, if a child (or family) in transition elects to enroll at Freedom Academy, they will be enrolled immediately. Enrollment may not be denied or delayed due to the lack of any document normally required for enrollment, including:

• Proof of residency

• Transcripts/school records (Freedom Academy will contact the student’s previous school to obtain school records. Initial placement of students whose records are not immediately available can be made based on the student’s age and information gathered from the student, parent, and previous schools or teachers.)

• Immunizations or immunization/health/medical/physical records (If necessary, the school will refer students to the liaison to assist with obtaining immunizations and/or immunization and other medical records. Health records may often be obtained from previous schools or state registries, and school- or community-based clinics can initiate immunizations when needed.)

• Proof of guardianship

• Birth certificate

• Any other document requirements

• Unpaid school fees

• Lack of uniforms or clothing that conforms to dress codes

• Any factor related to the student’s living situation

Unaccompanied youth must also be immediately enrolled in school. They may either enroll themselves or be enrolled by a parent, non-parent caretaker, older sibling, or liaison.

Services

Children and youth in transition shall be provided services comparable to services offered to other students in the school selected, including:

• Title I (as described below)

• Educational services for which the student meets eligibility criteria, including special education and related services and programs for English language learners

• Vocational and technical education programs

• Gifted and talented programs

• School nutrition programs

• Before- and after-school programs

Freedom Academy recognizes that children and youth in transition suffer from disabilities at a disproportionate rate, yet frequently are not evaluated or provided appropriate special education and related services. To address this problem, evaluations of children and youth in transition suspected of having a disability shall be given priority and coordinated with students’ prior and subsequent schools as necessary to ensure timely completion of a full evaluation. When necessary, Freedom Academy shall expeditiously designate a surrogate parent for unaccompanied youth suspected of having a disability. If a student has an Individualized Education Program (IEP), Freedom Academy shall immediately implement it. Any necessary IEP meetings or re-evaluations shall then be conducted expeditiously. If complete records are not available, IEP teams must use good judgment in choosing the best course of action, balancing procedural requirements and the provision of services. In all cases, the goal will be to avoid any disruption in appropriate services.

When applying any district policy regarding tardiness or absences, any tardiness or absence related to a child or youth’s living situation shall be excused. Freedom Academy will follow state procedures to ensure that youth in transition and youth who are out of school are identified and accorded equal access to appropriate secondary education and support services. School personnel shall refer children and youth in transition to appropriate health care services, including dental and mental health services. The liaison will assist the school in making such referrals, as necessary.

School personnel must also inform parents of all educational and related opportunities available to their children and provide parents with meaningful opportunities to participate in their children’s education. All parent information required by any provision of this policy must be provided in a form, manner, and language understandable to each parent.

Disputes

If a dispute arises over any issue covered in this policy, the child or youth in transition shall be immediately admitted to Freedom Academy, pending final resolution of the dispute. The student shall also have the rights of a student in transition to all appropriate educational services, free meals, and Title I services while the dispute is pending.

Freedom Academy shall provide the parent or unaccompanied youth with a written explanation of its decision and the right to appeal and shall immediately refer the parent or youth to the liaison. The parent or unaccompanied youth shall be given every opportunity to participate meaningfully in the resolution of the dispute. The liaison shall keep records of all disputes in order to determine whether particular issues or schools are repeatedly delaying or denying the enrollment of children and youth in transition.

The parent, unaccompanied youth, or school district may appeal the liaison’s decision as provided in the state’s dispute resolution process.

Free Meals

Hunger and poor nutrition are obvious barriers to learning. To help ensure that children and youth in transition are available for learning, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has determined that all children and youth in transition are automatically eligible for free meals. On the day a child or youth in transition enrolls at Freedom Academy, Freedom Academy must submit the student’s name to the district nutrition office for immediate processing.

Title I

Children and youth in transition are automatically eligible for Title I services, regardless of what school they attend. The trauma and instability of homelessness put students at sufficient risk of academic regression to warrant additional support. Freedom Academy shall reserve such funds as are necessary to provide services comparable to those provided to Title I students to children and youth in transition attending non-participating schools. The amount reserved shall be determined by a formula based upon the per-pupil Title I expenditure and developed jointly by the liaison and the Title I director. Reserved funds will be used to provide education-related support services to children and youth in transition, both in school and outside of school, and to remove barriers that prevent regular attendance.

Freedom Academy’s Title I plan will be coordinated with our McKinney-Vento services, through collaboration between the Title I director and the liaison. Children and youth in transition shall be assessed, reported on, and included in accountability systems, as required by federal law and U.S. Department of Education regulations and guidance.

Training

The liaison will conduct training and sensitivity/awareness activities for the following LEA and school staff at least once each year: the Superintendent, principal, assistant principal, federal program administrators, registrar, school secretaries, school counselors, school social workers, bus drivers, custodians, cafeteria workers, school nurses, and teachers. The trainings and activities will be designed to increase staff awareness of homelessness, facilitate immediate enrollment, ensure compliance with this policy, and increase sensitivity to children and youth in transition.

The liaison shall also obtain from every school the name and contact information of a building liaison. Building liaisons will lead and coordinate their schools’ compliance with this policy and will receive training from the district liaison annually.

 

 

Coordination

The liaison shall coordinate with and seek support from the State Coordinator for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth, public and private service providers in the community, housing and placement agencies, the pupil transportation department, liaisons in neighboring districts, and other organizations and agencies. Coordination will include conducting outreach and training to those agencies and participating in the local continuum of care, homeless coalition, homeless steering committee, and other relevant groups. Both public and private agencies will be encouraged to support the liaison and our schools in implementing this policy.

References

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. §§11431 – 11436.

Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §§6311 – 6315.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §§1400 et seq.

April 6, 2002 Policy of the Child Nutrition Division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

June 5, 1992 Policy of the Administration for Children and Families of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

 

Adopted and Revised March 23, 2021 by the Freedom Academy Board of Directors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Help With Online Systems

Frequently Asked Questions

See the list of questions and answers below for help with our online systems.

Once your student is enrolled and entered into our student information system, Synergy, our office staff will print out an activation key letter with instructions on how to create your personalized account. The letter will be given to you either at the beginning of school at Parents' Night, or you may request a copy at the front office.

You must now create your personalized account. In your web browser (like Chrome or Internet Explorer):

  1. Go to https://parentvue.freedom-academy.com
  2. Click the link I am a Parent>>
  3. Click I have an activation key and need to create my account.
  4. Read our Privacy Statement, and then click I Accept.
  5. Enter your First and Last Name, and Activation Key EXACTLY as they are spelled on your activation key letter. Your name must match as well as your activation key.
  6. Click Continue to Step 3.
  7. Enter your desired username and password (at least 6 characters). Also enter your primary email address - this will be used for school mailings. REMEMBER these selections as you will need them to logon the next time.
  8. Click Complete Account Activation.

To have ParentVUE send you your username and password:

  1. Go to https://parentvue.freedom-academy.com
  2. Click the link I am a Parent>>
  3. Underneath the Username and Password boxes, click on the Forgot your password? Click here link.
  4. Enter your email address (the one you added when you signed up for ParentVUE) and click the Send Email button.
  5. You should see a Email Sent message. Click on the link to return to the login page.
  6. Check your email. You should received an email with your username and password. Don't forget to check your spam folder, just in case!
  7. If you are still having problem, please come in to our front office and we can assist you. We cannot give username and password information out over the phone for security reasons.

Yes, you can access ParentVUE using either an iPhone or any Android/Google phone like Samsung.

First, you must create your account using your activation key using a web browser on a computer or on your phone. See the instructions above.

After that, install the ParentVUE app. The app is available from either the iTunes Store or Google Play (depending on the type of phone you have). Download it just like any other app you have. The app is free, and can be found by searching for ParentVUE in the store.

Once the app is installed, you can swipe left and allow your phone to search for the school. This works best when you are near the school. Otherwise, tap Enter Manually in the bottom corner of the screen and enter https://parentvue.freedom-academy.com as the website address. Enter your username and password and click Login.

Freedom Academy uses the MyHotLunchBox online lunch program service. To pay for your child's lunch and to see what is on the menu:

  • Go to their website ordernow.myhotlunchbox.com
  • If you have an account, please login. If you don't have an account, click the link Create an Account.
  • Once you have logged in, click Add to add the name of your child.
  • Enter the first name and last name of your child, and select Freedom Academy as the school.
Go to the EasyPay page above on our website. You can pay for all donations and fees online! If you prefer, you can also come into our front office and we can assist you.
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