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Student Absences and Excuses

This policy is to encourage regular school attendance and punctuality by establishing requirements for student attendance, outlining guidelines or procedures for attendance monitoring and reporting, and establishing procedures supporting chronically absent and habitually truant students as required by Arizona laws, rules, and regulations.

The regular school attendance of a child of school age is required by state law.  Regular school attendance is essential for success in school; therefore, absences shall be excused only for necessary and important reasons.  Such reasons include illness, bereavement, other family emergencies, and observance of major religious holidays of the family's faith.
In the event of a necessary absence known in advance, the parent is expected to inform the school; if the absence is caused by emergency, such as illness, the parent is expected to telephone the school office.  When a student returns to school following any absence, a note of explanation from the parent is required.

The Board believes that regular and punctual school attendance play important roles in a student’s achievement, as there is a strong correlation among regular school attendance, academic achievement, and the completion of school. Although school attendance is the responsibility of the parents or guardians and students, the District is dedicated to increasing the meaningful involvement of parents and guardians in all aspects of their students’ lives, including the reduction of chronic absences and truancy. 

To combat unexcused absences and truancy, all District schools are dedicated to providing culturally, linguistically, fair and age-appropriate interventions. District students shall not be treated differently with regard to attendance, absence, or truancy on the basis of their race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, religion, disability, genetic information, gender identity or expression.

When Absent from School

State law mandates that the school record reasons for all student absences.  Therefore, when a student is absent, it will be necessary for the parent to call the school on or before the day of the absence in order to advise the school as to the reason for the absence.  When it is impossible to call on the day of the absence, the school should be notified on the morning the student returns, in time for the student to obtain an admission slip prior to the student's first class.  All absences not verified by parental or administrative authorization will remain unexcused.

If a parent does not have access to a phone, either at home or at work, a note will be accepted for verification purposes.

For absences greater than one (1) day in length, the school should be notified each day of the absence.
All personnel will solicit cooperation from parents in the matter of school attendance and punctuality, particularly in regard to the following:

  • The scheduling of medical and dental appointments after school hours except in cases of emergency.
  • The scheduling of family vacations during school vacation and recess periods.

The school may require an appointment card or a letter from a hospital or clinic when the parent has not notified the school of an appointment of a medical or dental nature.

School administrators are authorized to excuse students from school for necessary and justifiable reasons.