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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

CHAPTER 120A. EDUCATION CODE; COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE

Table of Sections
SectionHeadnote

EDUCATION CODE

120A.01CITATION, EDUCATION CODE.
120A.02DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.
120A.03MISSION STATEMENT.
120A.05DEFINITIONS.

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINIONS

120A.10PUBLIC OFFICER MAY SUBMIT SCHOOL LAW QUESTIONS TO ATTORNEY GENERAL.

SCHOOL ATTENDANCE

120A.20ADMISSION TO PUBLIC SCHOOL.
120A.22COMPULSORY INSTRUCTION.
120A.24REPORTING.
120A.26ENFORCEMENT AND PROSECUTION.
120A.28SCHOOL BOARDS; DUTIES.
120A.30ATTENDANCE OFFICERS.
120A.32OFFICERS, TEACHERS; NEGLECT OF DUTY; PENALTY.
120A.34VIOLATIONS; PENALTIES.
120A.35ABSENCE FROM SCHOOL FOR RELIGIOUS OBSERVANCE.
120A.36SCHOOL ATTENDANCE.
120A.38CLASSROOM PLACEMENT; PARENT DISCRETION.

SCHOOL CALENDAR

120A.40SCHOOL CALENDAR.
120A.41LENGTH OF SCHOOL YEAR; DAYS OF INSTRUCTION.
120A.415EXTENDED SCHOOL CALENDAR.
120A.42CONDUCT OF SCHOOL ON CERTAIN HOLIDAYS.

EDUCATION CODE

120A.01 CITATION, EDUCATION CODE.
Chapters 120A to 129C may be cited as the Education Code.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 1; 1975 c 162 s 1; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 58; art 11 s 3
120A.02 DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.
(a) The Department of Education is established.
(b) The Department of Education shall carry out the provisions of chapters 120A to 129C
and other related education provisions under law.
History: 2000 c 254 s 1; 2003 c 130 s 7,12; 2004 c 294 art 5 s 20
120A.03 MISSION STATEMENT.
The mission of public education in Minnesota, a system for lifelong learning, is to ensure
individual academic achievement, an informed citizenry, and a highly productive work force.
This system focuses on the learner, promotes and values diversity, provides participatory decision
making, ensures accountability, models democratic principles, creates and sustains a climate
for change, provides personalized learning environments, encourages learners to reach their
maximum potential, and integrates and coordinates human services for learners. The public
schools of this state shall serve the needs of the students by cooperating with the students' parents
and legal guardians to develop the students' intellectual capabilities and lifework skills in a safe
and positive environment. It is part of the department's mission that within the department's
resources the commissioner shall endeavor to:
(1) prevent the waste or unnecessary spending of public money;
(2) use innovative fiscal and human resource practices to manage the state's resources and
operate the department as efficiently as possible;
(3) coordinate the department's activities wherever appropriate with the activities of other
governmental agencies;
(4) use technology where appropriate to increase agency productivity, improve customer
service, increase public access to information about government, and increase public participation
in the business of government;
(5) utilize constructive and cooperative labor-management practices to the extent otherwise
required by chapters 43A and 179A;
(6) report to the legislature on the performance of agency operations and the accomplishment
of agency goals in the agency's biennial budget according to section 16A.10, subdivision 1; and
(7) recommend to the legislature appropriate changes in law necessary to carry out the
mission and improve the performance of the department.
History: 1991 c 265 art 7 s 1; 1995 c 248 art 11 s 9; 1Sp1997 c 4 art 7 s 2; 1998 c 366 s
56; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 58
120A.05 DEFINITIONS.
    Subdivision 1. Scope. For the purposes of this chapter the terms defined in this section have
the meanings given them.
    Subd. 2. Auditor. "Auditor" means county auditor.
    Subd. 3. Board. "Board" means a school board.
    Subd. 4. Commissioner. "Commissioner" means the commissioner of education.
    Subd. 5. Common district. "Common district" means any school district validly created
and existing as a common school district or joint common school district as of July 1, 1957, or
pursuant to the terms of the Education Code.
    Subd. 6. County board. "County board" means a board of county commissioners.
    Subd. 7. Department. "Department" means the Department of Education.
    Subd. 8. District. "District" means a school district.
    Subd. 9. Elementary school. "Elementary school" means any school with building,
equipment, courses of study, class schedules, enrollment of pupils ordinarily in prekindergarten
through grade 6 or any portion thereof, and staff meeting the standards established by the
commissioner.
    Subd. 10. Independent district. "Independent district" means any school district validly
created and existing as an independent, consolidated, joint independent, county or a ten or more
township district as of July 1, 1957, or pursuant to the Education Code.
    Subd. 10a. Kindergarten. "Kindergarten" means a program designed for pupils five years
of age on September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year commences that prepares
pupils to enter first grade the following school year. A program designed for pupils younger than
five years of age on September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year commences that
prepares pupils to enter kindergarten the following school year is a prekindergarten program.
    Subd. 11. Middle school. "Middle school" means any school other than a secondary school
giving an approved course of study in a minimum of two consecutive grades above 4th but below
10th with building, equipment, courses of study, class schedules, enrollment, and staff meeting
the standards established by the commissioner of education.
    Subd. 12. School district tax. "School district tax" means the tax levied and collected to
provide the amount of money voted or levied by the district or the board for school purposes.
    Subd. 13. Secondary school. "Secondary school" means any school with building,
equipment, courses of study, class schedules, enrollment of pupils ordinarily in grades 7 through
12 or any portion thereof, and staff meeting the standards established by the commissioner of
education.
    Subd. 14. Special district. "Special district" means a district established by a charter
granted by the legislature or by a home rule charter including any district designated a special
independent school district by the legislature.
    Subd. 15.[Obsolete]
    Subd. 16. Superintendent. "Superintendent" means superintendent of the school district
involved.
    Subd. 17. Vocational center school. "Vocational center school" means any school serving a
group of secondary schools with approved areas of secondary vocational training and offering
vocational secondary and adult programs necessary to meet local needs and meeting standards
established by the commissioner of education.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 2,5; 1961 c 562 s 7; 1971 c 25 s 31; 1971 c 118 s 1; 1978 c
616 s 1; 1984 c 463 art 5 s 1; 1987 c 258 s 1; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1997 c 162 art 1 s 2;
1998 c 397 art 1 s 1-6,58; art 11 s 3; 1998 c 398 art 5 s 55; 2003 c 130 s 8,9,12; 1Sp2003 c
9 art 2 s 1; art 5 s 3; 1Sp2005 c 5 art 1 s 1

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINIONS

120A.10 PUBLIC OFFICER MAY SUBMIT SCHOOL LAW QUESTIONS TO
ATTORNEY GENERAL.
If there be any doubt as to the proper construction of any part of the state school laws, the
commissioner, at the request of any public officer, shall submit such question to the attorney
general, who shall give a written opinion thereon and such opinion shall be binding until annulled
or overruled by a court.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 2 s 17; 1986 c 444

SCHOOL ATTENDANCE

120A.20 ADMISSION TO PUBLIC SCHOOL.
    Subdivision 1. Age limitations; pupils. (a) All schools supported in whole or in part by
state funds are public schools. Admission to a public school is free to any person who: (1)
resides within the district that operates the school; (2) is under 21 years of age or who meets
the requirements of paragraph (c); and (3) satisfies the minimum age requirements imposed
by this section. Notwithstanding the provisions of any law to the contrary, the conduct of all
students under 21 years of age attending a public secondary school is governed by a single set of
reasonable rules and regulations promulgated by the school board.
(b) A person shall not be admitted to a public school (1) as a kindergarten pupil, unless the
pupil is at least five years of age on September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year for
which the pupil seeks admission commences; or (2) as a 1st grade student, unless the pupil is at
least six years of age on September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year for which the
pupil seeks admission commences or has completed kindergarten; except that any school board
may establish a policy for admission of selected pupils at an earlier age.
(c) A pupil who becomes age 21 after enrollment is eligible for continued free public school
enrollment until at least one of the following occurs: (1) the first September 1 after the pupil's 21st
birthday; (2) the pupil's completion of the graduation requirements; (3) the pupil's withdrawal
with no subsequent enrollment within 21 calendar days; or (4) the end of the school year.
    Subd. 2. Education and residence of homeless. (a) Notwithstanding subdivision 1, a district
must not deny free admission to a homeless person of school age solely because the district
cannot determine that the person is a resident of the district.
(b) The school district of residence for a homeless person of school age shall be the school
district in which the homeless shelter or other program, center, or facility assisting the homeless
person is located. The educational services a school district provides to a homeless person must
allow the person to work toward meeting the graduation standards under section 120B.02.
    Subd. 3.[Repealed, 2006 c 263 art 1 s 17]
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 6; 1967 c 173 s 1; 1974 c 529 s 1; 1984 c 463 art 5 s 2;
1Sp1985 c 12 art 7 s 2; 1987 c 258 s 12; 1988 c 718 art 6 s 1; 1989 c 246 s 2; 1989 c 329 art 7
s 1; 1993 c 224 art 4 s 7; 1996 c 412 art 13 s 3; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 7,8,58; art 11 s 3; 1998 c
398 art 2 s 3; 2006 c 263 art 1 s 1
120A.22 COMPULSORY INSTRUCTION.
    Subdivision 1. Parental responsibility. The parent of a child is primarily responsible for
assuring that the child acquires knowledge and skills that are essential for effective citizenship.
    Subd. 1a. Noncustodial parent access to records. Upon request, a noncustodial parent
has the right of access to, and to receive copies of, school records and information, to attend
conferences, and to be informed about the child's welfare, educational progress, and status, as
authorized under section 518.17, subdivision 3. The school is not required to hold a separate
conference for each parent.
    Subd. 2. Applicability. This section and sections 120A.24; 120A.26; 120A.28; 120A.30;
120A.32; and 120A.34 apply only to a child required to receive instruction according to
subdivision 5 and to instruction that is intended to fulfill that requirement.
    Subd. 3. Parent defined; residency determined. (a) In this section and sections 120A.24
and 120A.26, "parent" means a parent, guardian, or other person having legal custody of a child.
(b) In sections 125A.03 to 125A.24 and 125A.65, "parent" means a parent, guardian, or other
person having legal custody of a child under age 18. For an unmarried pupil age 18 or over,
"parent" means the pupil unless a guardian or conservator has been appointed, in which case it
means the guardian or conservator.
(c) For purposes of sections 125A.03 to 125A.24 and 125A.65, the school district of
residence for an unmarried pupil age 18 or over who is a parent under paragraph (b) and who is
placed in a center for care and treatment, shall be the school district in which the pupil's biological
or adoptive parent or designated guardian resides.
(d) For a married pupil age 18 or over, the school district of residence is the school district
in which the married pupil resides.
(e) If a district reasonably believes that a student does not meet the residency requirements of
the school district in which the student is attending school, the student may be removed from
the school only after the district sends the student's parents written notice of the district's belief,
including the facts upon which the belief is based, and an opportunity to provide documentary
evidence of residency in person to the superintendent or designee, or, at the option of the parents,
by sending the documentary evidence to the superintendent, or a designee, who will then make a
determination as to the residency status of the student.
    Subd. 4. School defined. For the purpose of compulsory attendance, a "school" means a
public school, as defined in section 120A.05, subdivisions 9, 11, 13, and 17, or a nonpublic
school, church or religious organization, or home school in which a child is provided instruction
in compliance with this section and section 120A.24.
    Subd. 5. Ages and terms. (a) Every child between seven and 16 years of age must receive
instruction. Every child under the age of seven who is enrolled in a half-day kindergarten, or a
full-day kindergarten program on alternate days, or other kindergarten programs shall receive
instruction. Except as provided in subdivision 6, a parent may withdraw a child under the age of
seven from enrollment at any time.
(b) A school district by annual board action may require children subject to this subdivision
to receive instruction in summer school. A district that acts to require children to receive
instruction in summer school shall establish at the time of its action the criteria for determining
which children must receive instruction.
    Subd. 6. Children under seven. (a) Once a pupil under the age of seven is enrolled in
kindergarten or a higher grade in a public school, the pupil is subject to the compulsory attendance
provisions of this chapter and section 120A.34, unless the board of the district in which the pupil
is enrolled has a policy that exempts children under seven from this subdivision.
(b) In a district in which children under seven are subject to compulsory attendance under
this subdivision, paragraphs (c) to (e) apply.
(c) A parent or guardian may withdraw the pupil from enrollment in the school for good
cause by notifying the district. Good cause includes, but is not limited to, enrollment of the pupil
in another school, as defined in subdivision 4, or the immaturity of the child.
(d) When the pupil enrolls, the enrolling official must provide the parent or guardian who
enrolls the pupil with a written explanation of the provisions of this subdivision.
(e) A pupil under the age of seven who is withdrawn from enrollment in the public school
under paragraph (c) is no longer subject to the compulsory attendance provisions of this chapter.
(f) In a district that had adopted a policy to exempt children under seven from this
subdivision, the district's chief attendance officer must keep the truancy enforcement authorities
supplied with a copy of the board's current policy certified by the clerk of the board.
    Subd. 7. Education records. (a) A district from which a student is transferring must transmit
the student's educational records, within ten business days of a request, to the district in which the
student is enrolling. Districts must make reasonable efforts to determine the district in which a
transferring student is next enrolling in order to comply with this subdivision.
(b) A school district that transmits a student's educational records to another school district
or other educational entity to which the student is transferring must include in the transmitted
records information about disciplinary action taken as a result of any incident in which the student
possessed or used a dangerous weapon.
(c) Notwithstanding section 138.17, a principal or chief administrative officer must remove
from a student's educational record and destroy a probable cause notice received under section
260B.171, subdivision 5, or paragraph (d), if one year has elapsed since the date of the notice and
the principal or chief administrative officer has not received a disposition or court order related to
the offense described in the notice. This paragraph does not apply if the student no longer attends
the school when this one-year period expires.
(d) A principal or chief administrative officer who receives a probable cause notice under
section 260B.171, subdivision 5, or a disposition or court order, must include a copy of that data
in the student's educational records if they are transmitted to another school, unless the data are
required to be destroyed under paragraph (c) or section 121A.75.
    Subd. 8. Withdrawal from school. Any student between 16 and 18 years old who seeks to
withdraw from school, and the student's parent or guardian must:
(1) attend a meeting with school personnel to discuss the educational opportunities available
to the student, including alternative educational opportunities; and
(2) sign a written election to withdraw from school.
    Subd. 9. Curriculum. Instruction must be provided in at least the following subject areas:
(1) basic communication skills including reading and writing, literature, and fine arts;
(2) mathematics and science;
(3) social studies including history, geography, and government; and
(4) health and physical education.
Instruction, textbooks, and materials must be in the English language. Another language may
be used pursuant to sections 124D.59 to 124D.61.
    Subd. 10. Requirements for instructors. A person who is providing instruction to a child
must meet at least one of the following requirements:
(1) hold a valid Minnesota teaching license in the field and for the grade level taught;
(2) be directly supervised by a person holding a valid Minnesota teaching license;
(3) successfully complete a teacher competency examination;
(4) provide instruction in a school that is accredited by an accrediting agency, recognized
according to section 123B.445, or recognized by the commissioner;
(5) hold a baccalaureate degree; or
(6) be the parent of a child who is assessed according to the procedures in subdivision 11.
Any person providing instruction in a public school must meet the requirements of clause (1).
    Subd. 11. Assessment of performance. (a) Each year the performance of every child who is
not enrolled in a public school must be assessed using a nationally norm-referenced standardized
achievement examination. The superintendent of the district in which the child receives instruction
and the person in charge of the child's instruction must agree about the specific examination to be
used and the administration and location of the examination.
(b) To the extent the examination in paragraph (a) does not provide assessment in all of the
subject areas in subdivision 9, the parent must assess the child's performance in the applicable
subject area. This requirement applies only to a parent who provides instruction and does not
meet the requirements of subdivision 10, clause (1), (2), or (3).
(c) If the results of the assessments in paragraphs (a) and (b) indicate that the child's
performance on the total battery score is at or below the 30th percentile or one grade level
below the performance level for children of the same age, the parent must obtain additional
evaluation of the child's abilities and performance for the purpose of determining whether the
child has learning problems.
(d) A child receiving instruction from a nonpublic school, person, or institution that is
accredited by an accrediting agency, recognized according to section 123B.445, or recognized by
the commissioner, is exempt from the requirements of this subdivision.
    Subd. 12. Legitimate exemptions. A parent, guardian, or other person having control of
a child may apply to a school district to have the child excused from attendance for the whole
or any part of the time school is in session during any school year. Application may be made to
any member of the board, a truant officer, a principal, or the superintendent. The school district
may state in its school attendance policy that it may ask the student's parent or legal guardian
to verify in writing the reason for the child's absence from school. The board of the district in
which the child resides may approve the application upon the following being demonstrated to the
satisfaction of that board:
(1) that the child's bodily or mental condition is such as to prevent attendance at school or
application to study for the period required, which includes:
(i) child illness, medical, dental, orthodontic, or counseling appointments;
(ii) family emergencies;
(iii) the death or serious illness or funeral of an immediate family member;
(iv) active duty in any military branch of the United States; or
(v) other exemptions included in the district's school attendance policy;
(2) that the child has already completed state and district standards required for graduation
from high school; or
(3) that it is the wish of the parent, guardian, or other person having control of the child, that
the child attend for a period or periods not exceeding in the aggregate three hours in any week,
a school for religious instruction conducted and maintained by some church, or association of
churches, or any Sunday school association incorporated under the laws of this state, or any
auxiliary thereof. This school for religious instruction must be conducted and maintained in a
place other than a public school building, and it must not, in whole or in part, be conducted and
maintained at public expense. However, a child may be absent from school on such days as the
child attends upon instruction according to the ordinances of some church.
    Subd. 13. Issuing and reporting excuses. The clerk or any authorized officer of the board
must issue and keep a record of such excuses, under such rules as the board may from time to
time establish.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 10 subds 2,3; 1961 c 567 s 1; 1967 c 82 s 1; 1969 c 161 s 1,2;
1974 c 326 s 1; 1975 c 162 s 3; 1977 c 306 s 14; 1977 c 447 art 7 s 2,3; 1978 c 616 s 2; 1978 c
706 s 1; 1980 c 609 art 3 s 2; 1Sp1985 c 12 art 7 s 3; 1986 c 444; 1986 c 472 s 1-3; 1987 c 178 s
1,9; 1988 c 718 art 7 s 19,20; 1989 c 296 s 1,2; 1991 c 265 art 7 s 2; 1993 c 224 art 9 s 13,14;
1994 c 465 art 2 s 9,10; 1994 c 647 art 4 s 1; art 9 s 3; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 9 s 3,4; 1Sp1997 c 4 art 6
s 1-2; art 7 s 3; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 29-35,58; art 11 s 3; 1998 c 398 art 2 s 5; art 5 s 4; art 5 s 55;
2000 c 489 art 10 s 1,21; 2002 c 352 s 8; 1Sp2005 c 5 art 2 s 3; 2006 c 263 art 2 s 1
120A.24 REPORTING.
    Subdivision 1. Reports to superintendent. The person in charge of providing instruction
to a child must submit the following information to the superintendent of the district in which
the child resides:
(1) by October 1 of each school year, the name, birth date, and address of each child
receiving instruction;
(2) the name of each instructor and evidence of compliance with one of the requirements
specified in section 120A.22, subdivision 10;
(3) an annual instructional calendar; and
(4) for each child instructed by a parent who meets only the requirement of section 120A.22,
subdivision 10
, clause (6), a quarterly report card on the achievement of the child in each subject
area required in section 120A.22, subdivision 9.
    Subd. 2. Availability of documentation. The person in charge of providing instruction to a
child must make available documentation indicating that the subjects required in section 120A.22,
subdivision 9
, are being taught. This documentation must include class schedules, copies of
materials used for instruction, and descriptions of methods used to assess student achievement.
    Subd. 3. Exemptions. A nonpublic school, person, or other institution that is accredited
by an accrediting agency, recognized according to section 123B.445, or recognized by the
commissioner, is exempt from the requirements in subdivisions 1 and 2, except for the
requirement in subdivision 1, clause (1).
    Subd. 4. Reports to the state. A superintendent must make an annual report to the
commissioner of education. The report must include the following information:
(1) the number of children residing in the district attending nonpublic schools or receiving
instruction from persons or institutions other than a public school;
(2) the number of children in clause (1) who are in compliance with section 120A.22 and
this section; and
(3) the number of children in clause (1) who the superintendent has determined are not in
compliance with section 120A.22 and this section.
History: 1987 c 178 s 2; 1993 c 224 art 9 s 15; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1998 c 397 art 1 s
37-39,58; art 11 s 3; 1998 c 398 art 5 s 55; 1999 c 241 art 6 s 1; 1Sp2003 c 9 art 2 s 2
120A.26 ENFORCEMENT AND PROSECUTION.
    Subdivision 1. On-site visits. A superintendent or the superintendent's designee may make an
annual on-site visit, at a mutually agreed upon time, to an unaccredited nonpublic school, home,
or other institution where children are receiving instruction. Upon mutual agreement between the
parties, the superintendent or the superintendent's designee may also visit an accredited nonpublic
school, person, or other institution providing instruction. The purpose of these visits shall be
limited to monitoring compliance with the requirements of section 120A.22. If the superintendent
determines that there is evidence of noncompliance with the requirements of sections 120A.22
and 120A.24, the superintendent may make additional visits during the school year.
    Subd. 2. Alternative to visits. In lieu of the visit authorized in subdivision 1, a parent who is
providing instruction may present the documentation required in section 120A.24, subdivision 2,
to the superintendent.
    Subd. 3. Notice to parents. The superintendent must notify the parent, in writing, if a child
is alleged to be receiving instruction in violation of sections 120A.22 and 120A.24. The written
notification must include a list of the specific alleged violations.
    Subd. 4. Fact-finding and mediation. If the specified alleged violations of the compulsory
attendance requirements are not corrected within 15 days of receipt of the written notification, the
superintendent must request fact-finding and mediation services from the commissioner.
    Subd. 5. Notice to county attorney. If the alleged violations are not corrected through the
fact-finding and mediation process under subdivision 4, the superintendent must notify the county
attorney of the alleged violations. The superintendent must notify the parents, by certified mail, of
the superintendent's intent to notify the county attorney of the alleged violations.
    Subd. 6. Criminal complaint; prosecution. The county attorney in the county in which the
alleged violations have occurred has jurisdiction to conduct a prosecution for violations of this
section, section 120A.22, or section 120A.24. A criminal complaint may be filed in any court
in the county exercising criminal jurisdiction and must name the persons neglecting or refusing
to comply with this section, section 120A.22, or section 120A.24. After the complaint has been
filed, a warrant must be issued and proceedings in trial must commence as provided by law in
misdemeanor cases.
History: 1987 c 178 s 3; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 40-43,58; art 11 s 3
120A.28 SCHOOL BOARDS; DUTIES.
It is the duty of each board through its clerk or other authorized agent or employee, to report
the names of children required to attend school, with excuses, if any, granted in the district, to the
superintendent or principals of the district, within the first week of school. Subsequent excuses
granted must be reported in the same manner. The clerk or principal must provide the teachers in
the several schools supervised with the necessary information for the respective grades of school,
relating to the list of pupils with excuses granted. Within five days after receiving the report, the
clerk or principals must report the names of children not excused who are not attending school,
with the names and addresses of their parents, to the superintendent.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 11; 1975 c 162 s 4; 1Sp1985 c 12 art 7 s 4; 1986 c 444; 1998
c 397 art 1 s 44,58
120A.30 ATTENDANCE OFFICERS.
The board of any district may authorize the employment of attendance officers, who must
investigate truancy or nonattendance at school, make complaints, serve notice and process, and
attend to the enforcement of all laws and district rules regarding school attendance. When any
attendance officer learns of any case of habitual truancy or continued nonattendance of any child
required to attend school the officer must immediately notify the person having control of the
child to send and keep the child in school. The attendance officer must also refer a habitual truant
child as defined in section 260C.007, subdivision 19, and the child's parent or legal guardian to
appropriate services and procedures under chapter 260A, if available within the school district.
Attendance officers or other designated school officials must ensure that the notice required
by section 260A.03 for a child who is a continuing truant is sent. The officer must act under
the general supervision of the superintendent.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 1 s 14; 1978 c 616 s 3; 1986 c 444; 1995 c 226 art 3 s 3; 1998 c
397 art 1 s 45,58; 1999 c 139 art 4 s 2
120A.32 OFFICERS, TEACHERS; NEGLECT OF DUTY; PENALTY.
Any school officer, truant officer, public or nonpublic school teacher, principal, district
superintendent, or person providing instruction other than a parent refusing, willfully failing, or
neglecting to perform any duty imposed by sections 120A.22 to 120A.30, 120A.35, 120A.41, and
123B.03 is guilty of a misdemeanor. All persons found guilty shall be punished for each offense
by a fine of not more than $10 or by imprisonment for not more than ten days. All fines, when
collected, shall be paid into the county treasury for the benefit of the school district in which
the offense is committed.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 8 s 19; 1975 c 162 s 36; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 178 s 7; 1989 c 209
art 2 s 1; 1991 c 199 art 2 s 14; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 55,58; art 11 s 3
120A.34 VIOLATIONS; PENALTIES.
Any person who fails or refuses to provide for instruction of a child of whom the person has
legal custody, and who is required by section 120A.22, subdivision 5, to receive instruction, when
notified so to do by a truant officer or other official, or any person who induces or attempts to
induce any child unlawfully to be absent from school, or who knowingly harbors or employs,
while school is in session, any child unlawfully absent from school, shall be guilty of a petty
misdemeanor. Any fines collected shall be paid into the county treasury for the benefit of the
school district in which the offense is committed.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 8 s 20; 1986 c 444; 1987 c 178 s 8; 1989 c 296 s 3; 1993 c 224 art
14 s 14; 1995 c 226 art 3 s 8; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 56,58; art 11 s 3; 2002 c 220 art 6 s 7
120A.35 ABSENCE FROM SCHOOL FOR RELIGIOUS OBSERVANCE.
Reasonable efforts must be made by a school district to accommodate any pupil who wishes
to be excused from a curricular activity for a religious observance.
History: 1989 c 60 s 1; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 58
120A.36 SCHOOL ATTENDANCE.
Attendance at a particular public school is a privilege not a right for a pupil.
History: 1996 c 412 art 4 s 1; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 58
120A.38 CLASSROOM PLACEMENT; PARENT DISCRETION.
(a) A parent or guardian of twins or higher order multiples may request that the children
be placed in the same classroom or in separate classrooms if the children are in the same grade
level at the same school. The school may recommend classroom placement to the parents and
provide professional education advice to the parents to assist them in making the best decision
for their children's education. A school must provide the placement requested by the children's
parent or guardian, unless the school board makes a classroom placement determination following
the school principal's request according to this section. The parent or guardian must request the
classroom placement no later than 14 days after the first day of each school year or 14 days after
the first day of attendance of the children during a school year if the children are enrolled in the
school after the school year commences. At the end of the initial grading period, if the school
principal, in consultation with the children's classroom teacher, determines that the requested
classroom placement is disruptive to the school, the school principal may request that the school
board determine the children's classroom placement.
(b) For purposes of this section, "higher order multiples" means triplets, quadruplets,
quintuplets, or more.
History: 2005 c 33 s 1

SCHOOL CALENDAR

120A.40 SCHOOL CALENDAR.
(a) Except for learning programs during summer, flexible learning year programs authorized
under sections 124D.12 to 124D.127, and learning year programs under section 124D.128, a
district must not commence an elementary or secondary school year before Labor Day, except as
provided under paragraph (b). Days devoted to teachers' workshops may be held before Labor Day.
Districts that enter into cooperative agreements are encouraged to adopt similar school calendars.
(b) A district may begin the school year on any day before Labor Day to accommodate a
construction or remodeling project of $400,000 or more affecting a district school facility. A
school district that agrees to the same schedule with a school district in an adjoining state also
may begin the school year before Labor Day as authorized under this paragraph.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 7 s 12; 1967 c 890 s 2; 1974 c 326 s 15; 1978 c 764 s 89; 1985 c 51
s 1; 1987 c 258 s 7; 1990 c 562 art 8 s 33; 1991 c 265 art 9 s 57; 1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1998 c
397 art 6 s 117; art 11 s 3; 1998 c 398 art 6 s 29; 1999 c 241 art 9 s 2; 1Sp2005 c 1 art 4 s 31
120A.41 LENGTH OF SCHOOL YEAR; DAYS OF INSTRUCTION.
A school board's annual school calendar must include at least the number of days of student
instruction the board formally adopted as its school calendar at the beginning of the 1996-1997
school year.
History: 1Sp1997 c 4 art 6 s 3; 1998 c 397 art 1 s 36; art 6 s 124; 2000 c 500 s 1; 1Sp2003 c
9 art 2 s 3
120A.415 EXTENDED SCHOOL CALENDAR.
A school board that offers licensed kindergarten through grade 12 teachers the opportunity
for more staff development training and additional salary under section 122A.40, subdivisions 7
and 7a
, or 122A.41, subdivisions 4 and 4a, must adopt as its school calendar a total of 240 days of
student instruction and staff development, of which the total number of staff development days
equals the difference between the total number of days of student instruction and 240 days. A
school board may schedule additional staff development days throughout the calendar year.
History: 1Sp2001 c 6 art 2 s 1
120A.42 CONDUCT OF SCHOOL ON CERTAIN HOLIDAYS.
The governing body of any district may contract with any of the teachers of the district for
the conduct of schools, and may conduct schools, on either, or any, of the following holidays,
provided that a clause to this effect is inserted in the teacher's contract: Martin Luther King's
birthday, Lincoln's and Washington's birthdays, Columbus Day and Veterans' Day. On Martin
Luther King's birthday, Washington's birthday, Lincoln's birthday, and Veterans' Day at least one
hour of the school program must be devoted to a patriotic observance of the day.
History: Ex1959 c 71 art 7 s 13; 1984 c 656 s 2; 1998 c 397 art 6 s 118,124