Attendance is the single-most important factor in determining academic achievement. Please schedule appointments and family vacations outside of the school day.
Washington State Attendance Requirements State law and district policies and regulations require daily and punctual attendance of all students unless officially excused. Parents and students are both responsible for assuring attendance. Students who have a pattern/history of absences or tardiness for personal illness may be required to have a note from a healthcare professional to excuse further absences or tardiness due to personal illness.
There are multiple ways to report an absence, an absence will be considered unexcused if the parent/guardian does not excuse the absence within two (2) days following the student’s return to school.
Parent/guardian calls/emails the Attendance Office email@example.com or (253) 571-2300
- Complete Parent and Guardian Request for Absence Form
- The student brings a note from a parent/guardian to the Main Office following an absence.
- The note must include the student’s first and last name, the date(s) of the absence, and the reason for the absence and a signature from the parent or guardian.
If a student must leave school during the day for any reason (medical, dental, disciplinary), a dismissal slip must be obtained from the Attendance Office. A written request with signature of parent or guardian for dismissal, to include both the time and reason for dismissal, is to be presented to the Attendance Secretary before school on the day of the early dismissal. Parents or guardians must provide valid identification prior to the release of a student.
If a student becomes ill during the day, an early dismissal slip will be issued by the nurse or the office after
contact with the parent/guardian has been made and authorization has been given for the student to leave
- If a student arrives less than 10 minutes late for his/her first class of the day, the student will report directly to class. Students must comply with each teacher’s policy for tardiness.
- If a student arrives to school more than 10 minutes late for his/her first class, the student will be marked absent and Parent/Guardian should provide a note, with the estimated time of arrival and a valid reason for the late arrival, to submit to the Attendance Secretary for the absence to be excused. The attendance secretary will update the attendance if there is an excused tardy to class. Staff are asked to take attendance only once during the period so that they can focus on instruction. Students and families are asked to manage attendance records through the main office.
- Ask staff for a note if SAMi staff have detained you. If a student is late to class for personal reasons, it is required that the student comply with the teacher’s class rules for tardiness. Passes to class are not given out by the office if a student is tardy to a class.
Students are truant when they are willfully, and without authorization, absent from class, all or part of the day, or all or part of a class period.
Failure to check out of school through the Attendance Office before the end of the regularly scheduled day will be considered truancy. Consequences and progressive discipline will be implemented for incidents of truancy. The BECCA court is a mandatory monitoring process to insure students are in school and making progress towards graduation. If your student has seven unexcused absences in any month or ten unexcused absences within the school year, we are required to file a petition with the Juvenile court, alleging a violation of RCW 28A.225.010, the mandatory attendance laws. The petition may be automatically stayed and your student and family may be referred to a Community Truancy Board, or you and your student may need to appear in Juvenile Court.
When students are absent, the following steps are taken: (1) an automated call is placed to the phone number on file; (2) a letter notifying you of your student’s absence is sent at the 1st, 5th, 7th, and 10th absence; (3) after the 2nd absence, a meeting is scheduled for the student, guardian, and
administration to discuss options to support your students attendance; (4) a BECCA petition stay will be filed at your student’s 5th absence; and (5) an attendance support team meeting will be scheduled to look at additional supports for your student’s attendance. Chronic truancy will become a larger conversation with truancy court.
Planned Family Activities
A parent/guardian may request that a planned family activity be approved by completing a Pre-Arranged Absence form, available in the Attendance Office. The building principal must receive the completed form at least three (3) school days before the student's absence. If approved, the planned family activity shall be considered an excused absence, provided all conditions in this section are met.
Approval is at the discretion of the principal. Approval or denial is on a student-by-student basis, and shall include a fair consideration of the impact of the planned absence on the student's academic progress.
Except in extenuating circumstances, the total number of days for excused absences due to planned family activities in a school year shall not exceed five (5) days.
Requests for Homework For an absence of one or two days, please email the teachers or check their teacher websites for work. Parents/Guardians may call the Attendance Office to request homework when a student has not attended school for three (3) days or more.
Becca Bill Attendance Requirements
Under Washington State Law, RCW 23A.225, parents are responsible for their student’s full-time school attendance. Schools must take action to prevent unexcused absences. After one (1) unexcused absence, schools contact parents by letter or phone. After seven 7 unexcused absences within a month or ten (10) unexcused absences within a school year, SAMI and the District’s Enrollment Services Office will file a petition with Juvenile Court. Court action is required if a student has seven (7) unexcused absences in a month or ten (10) in a year. Students with a current court order compelling school attendance on file will have a progress report filed with the courts with only one (1) additional unexcused absence.