A. Attendance will be taken each period in each class. The
Automated Phone Messaging System will attempt to call daily
to advise parents of same day absences. An absence is defined
as ANY TIME a student misses class or when a student
misses more than 10 minutes of any class.
B. When a student accumulates:
1. Five (5) absences in a class, the appropriate teachers will
conference with the student and contact the parents/
guardian by telephone. (Please document phone attempts
2. *Eleven (11) absences, the student will be referred to the
Student Concern Team (SCT) for intervention. Possible
action may include monitoring, parent contact, a formal
intervention meeting, or referral to juvenile court for intervention
under RCW 28A.225.015 (the Becca law).
*NOTE: Students who are absent often and
miss required assignments or activities may
ultimately earn a failing grade. Students failing
three (3) or more classes during the semester
may be dropped from EHS. Parents or
administrators may request a conference at
any time during this process. The purpose of
the conference will be to eliminate or reduce
the student's absences.
Responsibility for Attendance
Student and parents must accept full responsibility for regular school
attendance. Failure to do so may result in loss of credit and grades,
removal from class or referral to Juvenile Court. Teachers are required
by law to have accurate attendance records. The teachers'
grade book is the document that will be audited. Teachers are
not to have teacher assistants take roll. It is part of the
teacher’s duty to maintain accurate attendance records by law.
Students are expected to attend all classes. Parents or guardians
should call the school when their student will be absent for
all or part of a school day to report the reason for the ab-
sence. Students returning to school after an absence must
report directly to the Attendance Office to pick up an ad-
mit slip back to class. If a parent/guardian has not phoned
the Attendance Office, the student must bring a note from
parent/guardian explaining the nature of the absence, date
of absence, student’s name, and signature of parent. Fail-
ure to phone in or bring a note within 48 hours of the ab-
sence may result in the absence being considered truancy.
Failure to complete missed assignments will result in loss of credit
for those assignments. Students will be given a minimum of one day
for every day of absence to make up work assigned DURING the
absence. Teachers may choose to extend the time at their discretion.
A student is considered truant anytime an absence has not been
cleared by a parent or teacher.
Authorized Reasons for Being Absent
Per Elma School District policy 3122, the following are valid excuses
for absences or tardiness:
• Participation in school-approved activities
• Disciplinary suspensions
• Doctor’s appointment (please schedule after school if
• Chronic or extended illness or health condition (medical
• Family emergency or bereavement
• Religious observance
Please note that it is NOT okay to be absent from school for special
events such as skiing, hunting, shopping, tanning, family vacations,
etc. Such activities are not considered excused under district policy
or compulsory attendance law and should be scheduled outside of
school hours. Numerous non-conforming (NC) absences may result
in referral to juvenile court under RCW 28A.225.015 (the Becca
In the event a student must be absent from school for reasons other
than those identified above, approval must be requested from the
principal or assistant principal at least one week in advance. Approval
of non-conforming absences is at the reasonable discretion of
the administrator EXCEPT that no approval shall be granted in any
case where a student is earning a D or F in one or more classes at
the time of the request.
Partial Day Absence
Students who must leave the school during the day MUST checkout
through the Attendance Office prior to leaving school. A telephone
call or note from the parent is required to leave during the day. If
students leave without signing out, disciplinary action will follow.
Pre-arranged, approved absences are included in the total accumulation
of student absences. Disciplinary suspensions and competitive
school related activities in which the student participates directly
and is required to miss class do not count as one of the 11 absences.
These absences will be identified with an “SB” or “SP” in the attendance
Pre-Arranged absences for religious observance will also not count
as one of the 11 absences. Prearranged absences will be noted with
“PT”, “SB”, or “OT” in the student’s attendance record. A class that
lasts for more than one period will count as one absence for each
period missed. In other words, missing a two period block class for
one day will count as two (2) absences in that particular class.
Dialogue between teachers/advisors/coaches is encouraged for students
in danger of failing. Teachers/advisors/coaches are expected to
use the process detailed below for pre-arranged student absences
under their direct supervision in order to facilitate communication
and ensure students’ academic success.
The supervising teacher/advisor/coach must generate a tentative list
of all students who will be participating in an activity/sporting event/
field trip and make this list available to staff members five (5) school
days in advance of the event.
Staff members who have concerns regarding the academic performance/
failing grades of any student participant must notify the advisor/
coach within 48 hours of the event/activity. A final list of all participants
must be made available to staff 24 hours in advance of the
Following the activity/event, the supervising teacher/advisor/coach
will submit to the Attendance Office the next school business day by
8:00 a.m. a list of all students who participated. The Attendance
secretary will make any needed changes in a student’s attendance
NOTE: Students leaving the school district for
any activity must have prior parent approval. A
signed parent permission form for each activity
must be submitted to the supervising teacher/
advisor 48 hours in advance of the event. Sporting
events that occur after school hours require a seasonal
parent permission slip.
For all other pre-arranged absences (medical appointments, family
trips, out of state travel), the following procedure must be complied
with. The student must:
A. Bring a written note from home explaining the reason for the
pre-arranged absence, the date(s) the student will absent, the
student’s name and the signature of the parent, or
B. Obtain a pre-arranged absence form from the Attendance
Office Circulate it among his/her teachers who will sign it and
indicate to what extent the student's grade will be affected.
Return it to the attendance office no later than 24 hours
before the absence is to occur.
Teacher to Teacher Absences
Immediate prior approval in writing from both teachers will be adequate
for this absence. It is the student's responsibility to obtain
such verification. Missing a class to study for a test or completing an
assignment for another class is not appropriate. For in-building
events involving a few students, such as lunchtime sales, activity setups,
the requesting teacher will confer with the sending teacher
prior to having students circulate pre-arranged absence forms.
Procedures for Implementation
Students’ absences will be recorded daily in each class by the
teacher. The computer scan sheets used for daily recording
will be kept on file for documentation.
The attendance secretary will input attendance information by the
end of each school day.
Parents will be notified of daily absences.
Emancipated students are students 18 years of age or older who are
self supporting and self-reliant and have taken responsibility for their
own education. A parent/student conference with an administrator
must be held before a student will be considered emancipated. Once
the student is emancipated, no parent contact will be required.
Extended Illness or Health Condition
If a student is to be confined to home or hospital for an extended
period, the school will arrange for the availability of assignments.
The district will cooperate with private tutors parents may employ.
In some instances of long-term illness homebound teachers can be
provided. At the high school level, if the student is unable to do his
or her schoolwork, or if there are major requirements of a particular
course, which cannot be accomplished outside of class, the student
may be required to take an incomplete or withdraw from the
class without penalty.
Excused Absence for Chronic Health Condition
Students with a chronic health condition, which interrupts regular
attendance, may qualify for placement in a limited attendance and
participation program. The student and his/her parents or guardian
shall apply to the principal or designee and limited program shall be
written following advice and recommendation of the student's medical
advisor. The school principal or designee shall approve the recommended
limited program. The staff shall be informed of the student's
needs, though the confidentiality of medical information shall
be respected at the parent's request.
Tardiness will be considered a behavior problem and will be addressed
by individual teachers, based on current policy. However,
when a student misses more than 10 minutes of any class, it is considered
an absence and will be recorded as such.
Early Dismissal/Late Arrival
Students who have early dismissal or late arrival are only to be on
campus 10 minutes preceding or following their classes. Exceptions
are to be cleared in writing by an administrator and will permit the
student only to be in the library or commons, not in the halls. Students
violating these exceptions will have their early dismissal or late
arrival privilege revoked.
(EHS Student Handbook, 2011-12, pgs 19-21)