There is a clear connection between attendance and academic success. When a student is absent from school, he or she must provide a written excuse to the Attendance Office within three days of the absence when returning to school regardless of their age. The excuse must contain the student identification number, date(s) of absence, the reason for the absence, and signature from a parent or guardian. Pennsylvania School Code and NASD Board Policy 204 allow only the following reasons for valid excused absences from school: Personal Illness, Medical, Dental, Clinic or Hospital Appointment, Funeral of a Relative, Family Educational Trip, Student Visits to Colleges, School Sanctioned Activities, Required Court Attendance, Religious Holiday or Instruction, or Urgent Reasons deemed acceptable by administration. Unexcused or Unlawful Absences may have a negative impact on a student’s grade and therefore submitting proper documentation for all absences is critical. Students will not receive credit for work due on the day of an unexcused or unlawful absence. A Student Absence Excuse Form is available online. Click HERE.
On occasion, students are absent from school for several days. In the event your child is absent for several days, please refer to online resources made available by your child’s teachers, such as Blackboard, to stay current with classroom activities and assignments. If these resources do not provide the information needed, please contact the teacher directly through their school email. Arrangements can be made to have assignments that are not accessible online available for pick up in the security vestibule.
Serving as agents of the state, principals are required to monitor student attendance closely. The PA Truancy Law, Act 138, imposes mandatory requirements on School Districts to take additional steps to improve the attendance of students. A School Attendance Improvement Conference will be scheduled with parents if a student acquires three unexcused absences from school. The purpose of the School Attendance Improvement Conference is to examine the student’s absences and reasons for the absences in an effort to improve attendance with or without additional services by developing an Attendance Improvement Plan. A copy of the Attendance Improvement Plan will be placed in the student’s permanent file. If a student records additional unexcused absences beyond the three days, the student will be referred to a school-based or community-based attendance improvement program. In some cases, the District may file a citation with the Magisterial District Judge.