Attendance Procedures

Procedures and policies regarding student attendance

1 Day (Same Day) Absence

Click here to report a Same Day (ALL DAY) Absence - Do not use this form for early checkout or late arrival (see below for those instructions)

Prearranged Absence

Students must have each teacher initial this form and then return completed form to the main office.

Attendance Procedures

Early Check-Out

  • Adults must show a picture ID to check a student out before dismissal.
  • We must have written permission from a custodial parent for an adult other than a custodial parent to pick up a child. 
  • The emergency care form or a written note from a custodial parent may be used to give permission.
  • To pick up a student early, please provide a note specifying the requested time and reason for pickup, as well as a daytime phone number where the parent/guardian can be reached.  The student should bring the note to the main office in the morning to receive a check-out pass.
  • If a parent needs to pick up a student due to unforeseen circumstances, the parent should call the main office to request an early pickup.
  • Parents/Guardians will receive an automated phone call from the attendance office when their student has an unverified absence from a class. Parents/ guardians should call the attendance office to clarify the absence.
  • Students are not to leave the school building for any reason during the day without a check-out pass from the main office. Ill students must receive a check-out pass from the clinic prior to leaving school and be signed out in the main office by a parent or other parent-approved adult.

Late Arrival

  • If students are arriving late to school they can either bring in a note from a parent, a parent can call the attendance line (703-533-2626), or the parent can come into the main office and sign the student in.  
  • Parents/Guardians will receive an automated phone call from the attendance office when their student has an unverified absence from a class. If no note was provided, parents/ guardians should call the attendance office to clarify the absence.

Full Day Absences

  • Parents are reminded that whenever an absence is anticipated for a future date, such as required family trips, college visits, etc., it must be pre-arranged with the pre-arranged absence form, linked here and also available in the front office. Completed forms should be returned to the main office.  
  • When a student is absent, it is the responsibility of the parent/legal guardian to call the attendance office to give the reason for the absence by calling 703-533-2626 or completing the online attendance form, or submitting a pre-arranged absence form. If a parent does not notify the school on the day of the absence, the parent has the next 3 days to notify the school or have the student bring a note to the main office.
  • Absences that are not excused within 3 school days by a parent/ guardian phone call, attendance form, or note will be unexcused. Parent/guardian notes should include the student’s full name, the date of the absence/tardy, the reason for the absence, and the parent/guardian daytime phone number. Calls are made to the home to confirm notes. Students who are absent 3 or more consecutive days because of illness or medical problems should provide a doctor’s note to have these absences excused.
  • If a student accrues 10 absences in any one class (excused and/or unexcused) throughout the year, the administration may require medical verification for any future absences to be excused. Proof or verification of absences and tardies may be required by an administrator for an unusual pattern of absences or tardies.

Reasons for Excused Absences

  • Illness of student

  • Death in family

  • Medical or dental appointment

  • Religious holiday observances

  • Suspension

  • School sponsored field trips

  • Approved pre-arranged Absences (with submission of pre-arranged absence form)

  • Other reasons accepted by the principal or designee

Reasons for Unexcused Absences

  • Family and/or student vacations that are not pre-arranged 

  • Child care situations

  • Non-school-related activities 

  • Missing the school bus/traffic or weather issues

  • Other reasons unacceptable to the principal

Excused and Unexcused Tardies

  • Students late to class without an excused pass will be marked as unexcused tardy for that class.  Students with excessive excused absences/tardies may be required to present documentation from a doctor.

Prearranged Absences

Did you know?

  • Regular school attendance in elementary school improves the chances that you will read on grade level.
  • Chronic absenteeism (missing 18 or more school days per year) is a primary cause of lower academic achievement even when the absences are "excused" or understandable.
  • Students who attend 90% or more of the school year are more likely to graduate from high school on time.
  • Absences can be a sign that a student is losing interest in school, struggling with school work, dealing with peer conflicts or facing some other potentially serious difficulty, and help is available.


Some Virginia Attendance Policies

  • Virginia requires that all children between the ages of five and eighteen be enrolled in school and attend on a daily basis.
  • Any student who fails to report to school for a total of five scheduled school days (unexcused) for the school year may be referred to a school attendance officer for further action.
  • When a referral is received, the school attendance officer will attempt to interview the student, parent, and other relevant parties to develop a plan to resolve the attendance issue.
  • A student who is absent from school for 15 consecutive days or more is withdrawn from school and must officially register again upon his or her return to school.

Here is a link to the FCPS “Encouraging School Attendance” Page: Encouraging School Attendance