Attendance at school is mandatory by the state of Minnesota. The County works to ensure that children get the best education they can by enforcing regular attendance.
A child is considered a "habitual truant" by the state if she or he is under the age of 16 years and is absent from attendance at school without lawful excuse for seven school days or for one or more class periods on seven school days. Children ages 16 and 17 will be considered truant if they have not lawfully withdrawn from school with their parents' permission. Read Minnesota Statute 260C.007.
Consequences of truancy
If a child continues to miss school, they will be required to attend a diversion meeting with family, school personnel, and a County truancy diversion worker. Failure to attend this meeting, and failure to follow through with expectations, may result in a petition being filed in Juvenile Court, which may result in any or all of the following consequences:
- School detention, in-school suspension or Saturday school.
- Supervision by a County probation officer or social worker.
- Community Service hours or Work Crew hours.
- Participation in individual or family counseling, or complete a psychological or chemical health evaluation.
- Participation in a group or in a series of educational programs through your school or community.
- Court order for parent to attend school with you.
- Fine of up to $100, or parent held liable for prosecution for your truancy with a penalty of up to 90 days in county jail and/or up to a $1,000 fine.
- Driver's license suspended or delayed until you are 18 years of age.
- Home detention with child unable to leave home without a parent except to go to school or work. If you are put on home detention, someone will monitor your whereabouts.
For more information, see the Dakota County Attorney’s A Truancy Prevention and Intervention Initiative brochure (Español).
Forms for school personnel
Guide to Complete Habitual Truancy Form
Notice of Habitual Truancy Form
Notice of Continuing Habitual Truancy Form
Truancy Parent Letter
Truancy Parent Letter (Español)