It's the first day of school for East Baton Rouge students, and it comes with tougher absence laws.
This year, students are required to be in school at least 167 days out of the 177 days in the academic year. Students now get 10 unexcused absences. Before, it was 15. Administrators say the more kids are in school, the better.
"We have a problem with some students. Uh, there's illness that they have to have a doctor's excuse. Sometimes they just don't want to come to school but those days are over. you have to come to school or there will be consequences," says Sherry Brock, principal of Westdale Middle School.
The change was made by the BESE Board to improve classroom performance.