Short-Term Independent Study

  • School sites are able to serve students who meet the minimum criteria and will miss five to ten consecutive days of school through Short-Term Independent Study (STIS). Serving students through STIS helps students academically and helps the district re-capture lost ADA.

    Parents are encouraged to contact the site principal of the school their child attends at least five school days prior to the student not attending school to request a short term independent study contract. Although STIS accommodates most students, principals may deny the request based on conflict with testing, academic and attendance concerns, or past incomplete contracts.


    EC Section 46300(e)(1) allows districts to claim apportionment for students "participating in independent study" for five or more consecutive school days.

    There is no distinction in law between short-term and long-term independent study— the same legal requirements must be met in either case. The phrase "short-term independent study" refers to independent study provided to a classroom-based student who needs to be away from school and on independent study for a short period of time (usually a matter of days or weeks) but who will return to the classroom. In these cases, the student’s classroom teacher often serves as the independent study supervising teacher and provides the independent study assignments (coursework the student would have covered had he or she remained in the classroom during this period).

Last Modified on January 23, 2020