Reporting an Absence

  • Regular attendance and promptness to class are important components of a student’s academic success. Students who are frequently absent may be jeopardizing not only their immediate academic success but also their ability to graduate. One all-day or period absence could result in a significant loss of instruction for your child. Being tardy to class interrupts classroom instruction and may hinder attendance accounting. We solicit the help of all parents and guardians to encourage their child to attend every class on a daily basis and to be on time.

    Contact Information

    To Verify an Absence
    Attendance Office (626) 974-6200

    A written absence note or parent/guardian phone call is required within two (2) days. Uncleared absences become TRUANT after two days.  We recommend bringing a note or call to the attendance counter the day of return. The Attendance Office is located in the administration building and opens at 6:45 a.m. daily. For your convenience, the attendance office makes use of an answering machine during busy times or off hours. We will check messages and return phone calls to verify absences.

    All notes and phone calls MUST include the following information:

    • Full name of the student
    • Grade level
    • Date(s) of absence and period(s) missed
    • Specific reason for absence
    • Parent/guardian signature
    • Parent/guardian contact phone number

    The Attendance Office will only accept notes from parents, doctors or dentists to clear absences.

    Notes will be kept in the student’s file. Parents may contact the attendance office to check the status of notes. Student’s with excessive “health excused” or “parent request” absences will be referred to an administrator and doctor’s notes may be required.

    Check out procedure – Leaving Campus Early
    To leave campus DURING the school day, students MUST bring a note to the Attendance Office before school, at break, or at lunch PRIOR TO LEAVING CAMPUS. The attendance office will issue an off-campus pass and the absence can then be verified and no truancy will be recorded.

    Students who are injured or become ill during the day must report to the Health Office and obtain an off-campus permit before leaving campus. 

    Late Arrival
    When it is necessary for a student to arrive late and miss one or more periods, the parent/guardian must send a note or call with the student’s first and last name, stating the dates, the periods affected, and the reason for the absence.

    Attendance Quick Reference

    PLEASE NOTE: If a student answers, please ask to speak with an adult and ALWAYS take the name of the person you spoke with regarding the attendance issue.

    What information is needed on notes and phone calls to the attendance office?
    All notes and phone calls MUST include the following information:

    • Full name of student
    • Grade level
    • Date(s) of absence and period(s) missed
    • Specific reason for absence
    • Parent/guardian signature
    • Parent/guardian contact phone number

    What if my student must leave campus before the school day ends?
    If a student comes to school and must leave for any reason, he/she must check out with the Attendance Office or Health Office before leaving school or the absence will be considered a TRUANCY!

    What happens if I fail to clear absences in a timely manner?
    If a student does not clear absences in a timely manner, the absence will be considered truancy. Any all day truancy, or 4 single period truancies, will result in a Saturday School assignment. Saturday School does not clear the truancy but is a discipline measure only. Students who do not attend an assigned Saturday School will be suspended.

    Excused Absences

    The following absences are considered the only excused reasons to be absent from school. Students are allowed to make up work for these reasons:

    • Illness
    • medical appointments (with verification from the doctor’s office)
    • quarantine
    • funeral
    • school-related activities
    • court appearance (with verification from the court)
    • jury duty
    • religious observance and personal reasons with prior administrative approval.

    (A request for an extended personal absence must be given to the attendance office in writing at least one week prior to the absence.)

    All other absences are considered truant or unexcused. An absence becomes a TRUANCY when it is not cleared by a parent in writing or by phone within two school days.

    Unexcused Absences

    An unexcused absence is defined as follows:

    • All absences not cleared through the attendance office by parent, guardian, or doctor are considered unexcused.
    • A student missing any class without parental knowledge.
    • UNEXCUSED/VERIFIED absences include:
      • oversleeping
      • car trouble
      • babysitting
      • vacation, etc.

    By law, teachers are under no obligation to accept make-up work due to truancies and unexcused absences. Students will not be allowed to make up any missed assignments, quizzes, tests, or exams in any class for which they have been marked absent unexcused.

    Please note that unexcused absences may lead to disciplinary action up to and including SARB referral.

    Single Period Absences
    It is the student’s responsibility to speak to that teacher and get a correction slip from to the Attendance Office with the teacher’s signature to clear the absence. If the period of absence is unknown, the student can come to the Attendance Office to find out which period is in question.

    The district auto-dialer is utilized for all absences, period and full day. Upon receiving the automated message, please call the school or write a note explaining the absence using the guidelines above. Please note that attendance staff cannot clear tardies in any case.

    Extended Absences

    When a student is absent because of an infectious/extended or personal reasons, illness, parents/guardians must contact the Attendance Office. Should an absence continue longer than first reported to the attendance office, the parent/guardian must call with the new information. Any student returning to school with a physician’s note (including physical education limitations) must report to the Health Office with the note.

    Family Vacations
    Arrangements for family vacations should be made during non-school days. If vacations are planned, it is the student’s responsibility to acquire his/her homework. It is also the student’s responsibility to meet with the teacher and obtain any missed assignments. 

    Excessive Health Absence Notification
    Board policy states, “When a student has had 14 absences in the school year for illness verified by methods listed … above, (written note or telephone conversation) any further absences for illness must be verified by a physician.” For this purpose, if a student reaches 14 Health-Related Absences, an Excessive Health Absence Notification Letter will be sent to the parent following review by the Assistant Principal and the School Nurse.

    Makeup of Missed Work
    Following an excused absence, a student shall be given a reasonable time by his or her teacher within which to make up the work the student missed during the absence. A student shall not be provided the opportunity to make up the work missed during an unexcused absence and could result in a lower grade.

    Tardy Policy

    Students may only clear a tardy with a doctor or dental note. Excessive tardies are referred to the Assistant Principal of Discipline. Action may include parent contact, student detention, Saturday School, or school suspension. 

    Truancy Policy

    • 1-All-Day Truancy = 1 Saturday School
    • 4 Period Truancies = 1 Saturday School

    If truancies persist, the student and his/her parent will be required to attend an Orange County District Attorney Parent Meeting, conducted by that office. A SARB (School Attendance Review Board) Hearing will result when this step fails to change the behavior and assignment to a Probation Officer will likely occur.