Compulsory attendance: an analysis of litigation

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University of Alabama Libraries

The purpose of this research was to examine court cases dealing with compulsory attendance laws, also known as compulsory education laws, for the purpose of establishing the issues, outcomes, and trends in compulsory attendance litigation. In this manner, school officials could be provided guidance on dealing with issues surrounding the attendance of students in their local schools. The research design was qualitative, document-based and historical in nature, and was drawn from the court records for one hundred court cases about compulsory attendance. The court cases were obtained from the Bounds Law Library on the campus of The University of Alabama. The research questions driving this project addressed the issues, outcomes, and trends reported by the judge in compulsory attendance litigation. From the issues, outcomes, and trends, guiding principles for school administrators with regard to compulsory attendance policy were developed. The court cases involved were the result of constitutional challenges to the applicable compulsory attendance laws, challenges of attendance policies, requests for or the denial of religious exemptions, weapon possession, challenges of minimum instructional standards, children being unruly, infringement of religious beliefs, weapon possession, removal of a student from the regular educational setting, and parental neglect. The jurisdictions represented included a wide variety of judicial settings from across the United States with the exception of the United States Supreme Court.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Education, General, Secondary education, Elementary education