There is probably no more important factor in a child's education than maintaining regular attendance. Regular attendance at school is essential for satisfactory educational progress and is required by law. The State of California's Education Code (Section 48200) compulsory attendance law states: 'Each person subject to compulsory full time education... shall attend school for the full time designated ... and each parent, guardian, or other person having control or charge of the pupil shall send the pupil to school for the full time designated as the length of the school day as determined by the governing board of the school district in which the residence of either the parent or legal guardian is located... "
Children must attend school each and every day and be on time unless there is a valid reason for them to be out of school. The only excused absences are for illness, quarantine, medical or dental appointments or attendance at a funeral of one's immediate family. All other absences will be marked "unexcused.”
When a child returns to school following an absence, a written excuse must accompany the child. The elements of an absence note must include:
- the absent pupil's name
- the name and signature of the parent or legal guardian
- the date of the note
- the date of the absence to which the note refers
- and the reason for the absence
The absent note should be brought on the day the child returns to school. Telephone calls to the office may be made in place of a written note. There is a 24-hour answering machine available for your convenience. Unexplained absences are considered unexcused by the state and are recorded as 'illegal' absences in student's school records.
Arriving at school on time is also extremely important to a child's educational progress as the principal and teachers often use the opening minutes of the school day to make announcements concerning the day's activities, to discuss lessons, as well as to begin an important lesson in which a key concept or skill is being introduced. This often puts the child who is tardy at a disadvantage by starting the day off with playing catch-up, or catch-on to lessons or learnings that have already begun. Please be sure your child arrives at school each and every day on time.