STUDENT ATTENDANCE POLICY
Phone Number to Report an Absence: (703) 319-2727
Standard excuse form
A major contributor to your success is for you to be present and on time to all of your classes. Our automated attendance system will aid you, your parents, teachers, and administrators in closely monitoring your attendance. By becoming aware and accountable, you will be able to improve academic performance by improving attendance.
It is the responsibility of your parent/guardian to notify the school if you are not present. Attendance is taken at the beginning of each class period.
DAILY PHONE OUT AND E-MAIL NOTIFICATION
This year we will continue to use our automated phone-out and e-mail notification system for daily absences. Each day, the parent of any student who has not been marked as excused by the end of the day will receive a phone call and an e-mail notifying them of the absence. Parents may not opt out of the phone calls. Each parent/guardian whose e-mail address is on file with Oakton High School will receive an e-mail of the absence. Please do not respond to the e-mail to excuse the absence, because we cannot verify the authenticity of an e-mail. We will not accept e-mails from any parent/guardian.
For purposes of credit and grading, reasons for excused absences include: illness of the student, death in the family, medical or dental appointment, personal religious obligations, or other reasons acceptable to the principal or his designee according to regulation 2601.23P. The current version of Regulation 2234 provides additional details. Please note that the principal may require a physician’s note in cases of chronic or long-term illness. Parents and students are encouraged to prearrange excused absences. (FCPS Reg. 2234)
UNEXCUSED ABSENCES/TARDIES/SKIPPING CLASS
Reasons for unexcused absences may include family and /or student vacations, child care situations, non-school related activities, missed school bus, most cases that involve private transportation, or other reasons unacceptable to the principal or his or her designee. Skipping class may result in Saturday School, loss of parking permit, or suspension.
COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE – STATE OF VIRGINIA LAW
§ 22.1-254. Compulsory attendance required; excuses and waivers; alternative education program attendance; exemptions from article.
A. Except as otherwise provided in this article, every parent, guardian, or other person in the Commonwealth having control or charge of any child who will have reached the fifth birthday on or before September 30 of any school year and who has not passed the eighteenth birthday shall, during the period of each year the public schools are in session and for the same number of days and hours per day as the public schools, send such child to a public school or to a private, denominational, or parochial school or have such child taught by a tutor or teacher of qualifications prescribed by the Board of Education and approved by the division superintendent, or provide for home instruction of such child as described in § 22.1-254.1.
EXCESSIVE UNEXCUSED ABSENCES – STATE OF VIRGINIA ATTENDANCE LAW § 16.1-278.9.
A1. If a court finds that a child at least 13 years of age has failed to comply with school attendance and meeting requirements as provided in § 22.1-258, the court shall order the denial of the child's driving privileges for a period of not less than 30 days. If such failure to comply involves a child under the age of 16 years and three months, the child's ability to apply for a driver's license shall be delayed for a period of not less than 30 days following the date he reaches the age of 16 and three months.
If the court finds a second or subsequent such offense, it may order the denial of a driver's license for a period of one year or until the juvenile reaches the age of 18, whichever is longer, or delay the child's ability to apply for a driver's license for a period of one year following the date he reaches the age of 16 and three months, as may be appropriate.
TARDY TO CLASS
All students who enter the classroom after the bell, without a pass, will be marked as unexcused tardy.
PHONE IN INSTRUCTIONS:
State the following:
- Student’s first and last name and spell slowly
- Grade level
- Reason for absence
- Parent/Guardian home/work phone number for verification
NOTE FROM PARENT/GUARDIAN INSTRUCTIONS:
Your note from your parent/guardian to the attendance office should include the following:
- Student's full name
- The date of absence
- Detailed reason for absence/tardy
- Time if checking in or out
- Phone number for verification – home/office
- Parent/Guardian Signature
This note must be presented within three days of your return to school. If you fail to present a note or call the school within this time period, the absence(s) will remain unexcused.
IF YOU WILL BE ABSENT, YOU SHOULD:
- Have your parent call the attendance phone number EACH DAY you will not be attending school.
- There is a THREE-DAY limit to clear an absence after which the absence remains unexcused.
- If a phone call was not made to excuse the absence, upon your return to school have a written note from your parent as to the nature of your absence.
IF YOU ARRIVE LATE TO SCHOOL, YOU SHOULD:
We do not accept phone messages for late arrivals.
- If you arrive after the tardy bell at 7:20, but before 7:30, you are to report directly to your first block class.
- If you arrive after 7:30, you will need to report to the attendance window with a note (see below) from parent/guardian, sign in, and receive a late pass to class.
- A doctor’s or dentist’s note is required for students arriving late due to appointments.
IF YOU NEED TO CHECK OUT OF SCHOOL EARLY, YOU SHOULD:
- Bring a note from your parent/guardian to the grade level office prior to 7:15 a.m.
- Only valid reasons listed under excused absences will be accepted.
- A pass will be issued to the student to be released from class.
- Because we are responsible for student’s whereabouts during the school day, prior to leaving the building, every student MUST SIGN OUT through the Main Office. If students do not sign out prior to leaving school grounds, disciplinary actions will follow.
Because of the number of calls we handle throughout the day, we cannot accept phone calls to dismiss your child early for appointments.
IF YOU NEED TO PREARRANGE AN ABSENCE, YOU SHOULD:
- Send a note from your parent/guardian to the attendance window ONE WEEK (five school days) prior to the first day of the absence.
- The approved note will be attached to a prearranged absence form that your child must carry to each teacher for signature and assignments.
- You must return the completed form to the grade level office.
EXCUSED PREARRANGED ABSENCES
Valid reasons include: college visits, religious holidays, planned hospitalization and required family trips (maximum of three days per year). Family trips lasting more than three days must be approved by the grade level administrator at least five days prior to the absences. These absences may result in unexcused absences.
COLLABORATION WEDNESDAY AND SNOW DAYS
In the event of a 2-hour delay, school will begin at 9:20. If we have a two hour delay on a Collaboration Wednesday, it will result in no collaboration for that day. Students are expected to be in their first block class by 9:20.