Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of Public Act 102-0321
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Public Act 102-0321


Public Act 0321 102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY



Public Act 102-0321
SB1577 EnrolledLRB102 12923 CMG 18266 b

    AN ACT concerning education.
    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
represented in the General Assembly:
    Section 5. The School Code is amended by changing Sections
26-1 and 26-2a as follows:
    (105 ILCS 5/26-1)  (from Ch. 122, par. 26-1)
    Sec. 26-1. Compulsory school age; exemptions. Whoever has
custody or control of any child (i) between the ages of 7 and
17 years (unless the child has already graduated from high
school) for school years before the 2014-2015 school year or
(ii) between the ages of 6 (on or before September 1) and 17
years (unless the child has already graduated from high
school) beginning with the 2014-2015 school year shall cause
such child to attend some public school in the district
wherein the child resides the entire time it is in session
during the regular school term, except as provided in Section
10-19.1, and during a required summer school program
established under Section 10-22.33B; provided, that the
following children shall not be required to attend the public
        1. Any child attending a private or a parochial school
    where children are taught the branches of education taught
    to children of corresponding age and grade in the public
    schools, and where the instruction of the child in the
    branches of education is in the English language;
        2. Any child who is physically or mentally unable to
    attend school, such disability being certified to the
    county or district truant officer by a competent physician
    licensed in Illinois to practice medicine and surgery in
    all its branches, a chiropractic physician licensed under
    the Medical Practice Act of 1987, a licensed advanced
    practice registered nurse, a licensed physician assistant,
    or a Christian Science practitioner residing in this State
    and listed in the Christian Science Journal; or who is
    excused for temporary absence for cause by the principal
    or teacher of the school which the child attends, with
    absence for cause by illness being required to include the
    mental or behavioral health of the child for up to 5 days
    for which the child need not provide a medical note, in
    which case the child shall be given the opportunity to
    make up any school work missed during the mental or
    behavioral health absence and, after the second mental
    health day used, may be referred to the appropriate school
    support personnel; the exemptions in this paragraph (2) do
    not apply to any female who is pregnant or the mother of
    one or more children, except where a female is unable to
    attend school due to a complication arising from her
    pregnancy and the existence of such complication is
    certified to the county or district truant officer by a
    competent physician;
        3. Any child necessarily and lawfully employed
    according to the provisions of the law regulating child
    labor may be excused from attendance at school by the
    county superintendent of schools or the superintendent of
    the public school which the child should be attending, on
    certification of the facts by and the recommendation of
    the school board of the public school district in which
    the child resides. In districts having part-time
    continuation schools, children so excused shall attend
    such schools at least 8 hours each week;
        4. Any child over 12 and under 14 years of age while in
    attendance at confirmation classes;
        5. Any child absent from a public school on a
    particular day or days or at a particular time of day for
    the reason that he is unable to attend classes or to
    participate in any examination, study or work requirements
    on a particular day or days or at a particular time of day,
    because the tenets of his religion forbid secular activity
    on a particular day or days or at a particular time of day.
    Each school board shall prescribe rules and regulations
    relative to absences for religious holidays including, but
    not limited to, a list of religious holidays on which it
    shall be mandatory to excuse a child; but nothing in this
    paragraph 5 shall be construed to limit the right of any
    school board, at its discretion, to excuse an absence on
    any other day by reason of the observance of a religious
    holiday. A school board may require the parent or guardian
    of a child who is to be excused from attending school due
    to the observance of a religious holiday to give notice,
    not exceeding 5 days, of the child's absence to the school
    principal or other school personnel. Any child excused
    from attending school under this paragraph 5 shall not be
    required to submit a written excuse for such absence after
    returning to school;
        6. Any child 16 years of age or older who (i) submits
    to a school district evidence of necessary and lawful
    employment pursuant to paragraph 3 of this Section and
    (ii) is enrolled in a graduation incentives program
    pursuant to Section 26-16 of this Code or an alternative
    learning opportunities program established pursuant to
    Article 13B of this Code;
        7. A child in any of grades 6 through 12 absent from a
    public school on a particular day or days or at a
    particular time of day for the purpose of sounding "Taps"
    at a military honors funeral held in this State for a
    deceased veteran. In order to be excused under this
    paragraph 7, the student shall notify the school's
    administration at least 2 days prior to the date of the
    absence and shall provide the school's administration with
    the date, time, and location of the military honors
    funeral. The school's administration may waive this 2-day
    notification requirement if the student did not receive at
    least 2 days advance notice, but the student shall notify
    the school's administration as soon as possible of the
    absence. A student whose absence is excused under this
    paragraph 7 shall be counted as if the student attended
    school for purposes of calculating the average daily
    attendance of students in the school district. A student
    whose absence is excused under this paragraph 7 must be
    allowed a reasonable time to make up school work missed
    during the absence. If the student satisfactorily
    completes the school work, the day of absence shall be
    counted as a day of compulsory attendance and he or she may
    not be penalized for that absence; and
        8. Any child absent from a public school on a
    particular day or days or at a particular time of day for
    the reason that his or her parent or legal guardian is an
    active duty member of the uniformed services and has been
    called to duty for, is on leave from, or has immediately
    returned from deployment to a combat zone or
    combat-support postings. Such a student shall be granted 5
    days of excused absences in any school year and, at the
    discretion of the school board, additional excused
    absences to visit the student's parent or legal guardian
    relative to such leave or deployment of the parent or
    legal guardian. In the case of excused absences pursuant
    to this paragraph 8, the student and parent or legal
    guardian shall be responsible for obtaining assignments
    from the student's teacher prior to any period of excused
    absence and for ensuring that such assignments are
    completed by the student prior to his or her return to
    school from such period of excused absence.
(Source: P.A. 99-173, eff. 7-29-15; 99-804, eff. 1-1-17;
100-185, eff. 8-18-17; 100-513, eff. 1-1-18; 100-863, eff.
    (105 ILCS 5/26-2a)  (from Ch. 122, par. 26-2a)
    Sec. 26-2a. A "truant" is defined as a child who is subject
to compulsory school attendance and who is absent without
valid cause, as defined under this Section, from such
attendance for more than 1% but less than 5% of the past 180
school days.
    "Valid cause" for absence shall be illness, including the
mental or behavioral health of the student, observance of a
religious holiday, death in the immediate family, or family
emergency, and shall include such other situations beyond the
control of the student, as determined by the board of
education in each district, or such other circumstances which
cause reasonable concern to the parent for the mental,
emotional, or physical health or safety of the student.
    "Chronic or habitual truant" shall be defined as a child
who is subject to compulsory school attendance and who is
absent without valid cause from such attendance for 5% or more
of the previous 180 regular attendance days.
    "Truant minor" is defined as a chronic truant to whom
supportive services, including prevention, diagnostic,
intervention and remedial services, alternative programs and
other school and community resources have been provided and
have failed to result in the cessation of chronic truancy, or
have been offered and refused.
    A "dropout" is defined as any child enrolled in grades 9
through 12 whose name has been removed from the district
enrollment roster for any reason other than the student's
death, extended illness, removal for medical non-compliance,
expulsion, aging out, graduation, or completion of a program
of studies and who has not transferred to another public or
private school and is not known to be home-schooled by his or
her parents or guardians or continuing school in another
    "Religion" for the purposes of this Article, includes all
aspects of religious observance and practice, as well as
(Source: P.A. 100-810, eff. 1-1-19; 100-918, eff. 8-17-18;
101-81, eff. 7-12-19.)

Effective Date: 1/1/2022