When a child is absent from school, he/she misses a day of learning. Since each day’s learning builds upon previous information, it is essential that children attend school regularly. As a parent, you can help your child to see attendance as an important part of his/her education in the following ways:
- Don’t keep your child home for minor ailments.
- Show an active interest in your child’s activities.
- Encourage your child to develop good personal habits that deal with time schedules.
- Compliment your child on his/her accomplishments.
- Refuse to write false excuses.
- Discuss your child’s school day with him/her.
- Encourage your child to be involved in school activities.
- Participate in school activities yourself.
When a child is absent from school, he must present a WRITTEN EXCUSE WITHIN 3 DAYS, signed by the parent or legal guardian, indicating the child’s full name, teacher’s name, date(s) of absence(s), and the reason for being absent.
If no excuse is received, the absence will automatically be coded unexcused/illegal. All unexcused/illegal absences that total 3 days and beyond are referred to the school district attendance officer. Act 29 of the Pennsylvania Public School Code makes the following provisions for any or all of the consequences for unexcused/illegal absence from school:
- Payment of fine not exceeding $300, plus costs.
- Required community service for a period of up to six (6) months. This applies to parents of a child 12 years of age or younger.
- Completion of a mandatory parenting education program.
Ten days absence will generate a certified letter to the home indicating a student’s attendance status and stating that at 10 days absence, a doctor’s excuse will be required for future absences to be excused/legal.
Children arriving after 8:50 AM, will be considered tardy. A child is permitted four (4) unexcused tardies per year. An unexcused tardy is defined as one in which a child is not signed in by a parent, does not have a written acceptable excuse from a parent or does not have a doctor’s excuse for an appointment that day.
On the fourth unexcused tardy, a letter will be sent to the parent(s) alerting them of the number of tardies for their child/children. If a student(s) acquires four (4) more tardies, an eight (8) day tardy letter will be sent to inform the parent(s) that any additional unexcused tardies will be coded as 1/2 day illegal absence.
If there are an exceptional number of tardies, even with a parent sign-in or excuse, we reserve the right to, at our discretion, begin coding them illegal and subject to the above stated consequences, to also include referral to the school attendance officer.
A student’s arrival to school between the hours of 10:30 AM and 1:30 PM is considered a ½ day absence. A student arriving to school after the hour of 1:30 PM is considered a full day absence. Students leaving school for scheduled appointments will be given a Dental/Medical form that will need to be signed by the doctor or dentist and handed in to the office upon the student’s return to school. If the form is not returned that day or the following day, the day will be coded illegal or unexcused.
EXCUSE FOR RELIGIOUS REASONS
Parents who desire to have their child excused from school to observe religious holidays, conferences, etc., should make this known in writing to the principal. In addition, parents who desire to have their child excused from parties, celebrations, etc., should submit a written statement to have their child excused, due to religious reasons.