Why Attendance Is Important
School attendance is important because:
- Students are more likely to succeed in academics when they attend consistently.
- Attendance is both the school’s and family’s responsibility.
- Let your child know that you believe attending school is important.
- It shows them you are interested in their school activities and you want them to do well in school.
Attendance Strategies for Parents
- Talk with your child. Discuss why he/she does not want to go to school. Try to find the reason and work towards a solution. Involve school staff in the solution.
- Contact the school to get additional information. Your child's teacher(s), counselor or administrator(s) may have information that explains why your child does not want to go to school. Ask them for help if needed.
- Set attendance goals with your child.
- Does your child need an evaluation for an individualized education plan (IEP) or a 504 plan? These programs can provide accommodations and support for children within the educational setting.
- Establish a daily routine for your child to help get him/her to school.
How Can Parents Help?
- Give yourself and your child plenty of time to get ready in the morning.
- Avoid electronics such as TV, gaming, etc.
- Have a calendar to keep track of important dates.
- Provide a specific time for your child to do homework.
- Have a place for your child to work.
- Remove all distractions.
Get ready the night before.
- Lay out school clothes
- Get lunches ready
- Have snacks packed
- Get backpacks ready
- Have shoes by the door
- Have an established bedtime routine.
- Get enough sleep.
Attendance Makes a Difference
- Attendance makes a difference in a child's life.
- It affects a student's academic and emotional learning.
- Lack of attendance prohibits student's from being engaged in learning.
When a Child Misses School
- When a child attends school there are important skills that are learned other than reading, writing and math.
- Because academic skills build on each other, when a student misses school they miss basic academic skills.
- When a child misses school, they miss out on connections with other students and their teachers.
- The constant disruption can cause anxiety and stress in a child's life.
Elementary students will be counted absent after 9:00 a.m.
Attendance Requirements for Elementary Students
Students are expected to be in attendance 90% of school days.
- Attendance at funerals
- Religious holidays
- Other family emergencies are the only excused absences.
In order for an absence to be counted excused, a dated, written note signed by the parent stating the reason for absence must be provided to the school.
When a student's absence for personal illness exceeds seven cumulative days, the principal may require a statement from a physician or health clinic verifying the illness or other condition requiring the student's extended absence from school.
Any absences for reasons other than illness or death in the family are considered unexcused.
In addition, any absence without a written note explaining that there was an illness or death is also considered unexcused.
Make-up work for absences less than 3 days
Students are expected to get their missed work from the teacher upon returning to school.
More than 3 Days
If you know of an absence longer than 3 days, please fill out a “Student Absence Request” form one week prior to the absence.
The official attendance period for secondary students (middle, high school and senior high) is second period.
Attendance Requirements for Secondary Students
State law requires that a student must attend class 90% of the scheduled school days per semester to receive credit and to receive a TEA form for a driver's license.
Absences due to acceptable reasons are considered excused.
Acceptable reasons include:
- Personal illness
- Death or illness in the immediate family
- Entire school day medical/dental appointments
- Weather or road conditions making travel dangerous
- Other causes approved one week in advance by the principal.
All other absences are considered unexcused. After the seventh absence, medical notes may be required for all subsequent absences.
Students receive a zero on all assignments and tests missed.
Unexcused with Permission
Absences which are not excused but are unavoidable may be classified as unexcused with permission.
While these count against loss of credit and senior exemption, 100% may be earned on makeup work.
In order to make up and receive credit for work missed because of a planned unexcused absence, a student must submit a written notice from a parent to his/her subschool one week in advance of the planned absence. When no prior notification is given, students will receive a zero for work or tests due to the absence.
What is required when my student is absent?
A student who is absent from school for any portion of a school day must provide a note that describes the reason for the absence.
- The note must be signed by the student’s parent/guardian.
- If the student is 18 or older or is an emancipated minor, the note must be signed by the student.
Failure to Bring a Note
Failure to bring a written excuse signed by the parent or guardian within three school days of an absence may result in an unexcused absence being recorded.
An email note from a parent or guardian’s email account, as registered in the Plano ISD Parent Portal, is acceptable documentation; however, Plano ISD reserves the right to require a signed written note.