Good attendance in school is crucial for a child to reach his full potential. Each school year has 182 student days, except for Kindergarten students, who attend school for 178 days. We are aware that illness, injury or other emergencies sometimes occur that prohibit students from attending school. Each student’s attendance will be recorded daily. When a student reaches 5 days of absence, a letter will be sent to the parent or guardian informing them of the number of days their child has accumulated up to 10 days. After a student reaches 10 days of absence, a second letter will be sent home explaining the need for a doctor’s excuse for each additional absence. Please be informed that a doctor’s excuse letter can be sent home at any time if a student is chronically absent. Also, if your child has been hospitalized or has a known illness and/or injury, the school may waive the doctor’s excuse order. We believe that each case is unique. The need for a doctor’s excuse letter will be determined on an individual basis by the building principal. Students may also be excused early for a doctor or dentist’s appointment if the pupil submits a note or appointment card to the office.
EARLY RELEASE POLICY
All children will be released from the office. The person picking up a child will need to sign the child out and present a photo ID. Please remember to send a note to the school office if you plan on having someone other than you pick your child up from school. Non-custodial parents also need a note and ID.
The School District recognizes that, from time to time, students may have the opportunity to participate in pre-planned trips and educational experiences during the regular school year. Upon receipt of a prior written request from the parents or guardians of the pupils involved, pupils may be excused from school attendance to participate in educational tours or trips. The determination of each request will be made on the following: prior attendance records, previous requests and frequency of such requests.
An educational travel form should be submitted at least two days prior to the date of departure. Students will be limited to 5 days of educational travel per year. Customarily, any days exceeding the 5 allotted days will be counted as unexcused or illegal absences. However, the building principal will always make the final decision if additional days can be granted. Please remember that a separate form should be signed for each child with the Eastern Lancaster County Schools.
When a pupil is absent for any period of time, he/she is responsible for submitting an excuse card or a hand-written note to the school office. This card/note is to be completed by the parent or guardian of the child and returned to school within three days of the absence. A written, signed excuse is required. Any student failing to produce an excuse will be charged with an illegal absence. Any student accumulating 3 illegal absences will be notified via certified mail from the district office. For certain infectious illnesses or conditions, a physician’s excuse must be furnished. Please note that no excuse card is needed if the school nurse sends a child home.
In accordance with the PA Law of Compulsory Attendance, Eastern Lancaster County School District has adopted the
following attendance guidelines:
DAILY ATTENDANCE RECORD
- After an absence, please return a completed/signed excuse card to your child’s teacher/school office.
- All excuse cards must be returned to the teacher or the office within three (3) consecutive school days.
- If no excuse card is returned, the day will be marked as an illegal day. (See – “Illegal Days”)
- No excuse card will be required if a child is sent home by the school nurse.
PHYSICIAN’S EXCUSE REQUIRED
- When absence is from a contagious disease.
- When absence is chronic (more than 5 consecutive days)
- When proof of illness is deemed necessary by school authorities.
- When required because of excessive absenteeism.
5 DAY ATTENDANCE LETTER
- This form letter is to advise parents that their child has been absent for ten (10) days, regardless of the nature of the
- The reasons for these absences will not be questioned. It is an informational letter to keep parents apprised of the
number of absences their child has accumulated.
10 DAYS OF ABSENCE
This form letter will advise parents that, due to the excessive amount of absences, a doctor’s excuse will be required for
each day of absence from that date forward. If a child returns to school and does not have a doctor’s excuse, the day will
be considered illegal.
- A child is permitted three (3) illegal days per school year.
- Upon accumulating three (3) illegal days, a warning letter is sent to the parents via certified mail.
- After this letter is picked up by the parent/guardian, any additional illegal days will be prosecuted through the district magistrate’s office.
- Invalid/forged signature.
- Failure to turn in a written excuse from a parent or guardian within three (3) days of the absence
- Missed bus/car problems.
LAWFUL ABSENCES FROM SCHOOL:
- Illness or injury - If absence more than five (5) or more consecutive days, a doctor’s excuse is needed.
- Family emergencies
- Major religious holidays
- Death of a family member
- Pre-approved education/travel days (up to 5 per school year); travel form to be submitted at least five (5) days prior to departure.
- Authorized school activities
TARDY TO SCHOOL
- Tardy shall be defined as any student arrival to school after the start of the school day (9:00 AM) until 10:40 AM.
Any student who reports late to school must check in at the office before going to his/her classroom. This is to ensure
they are removed from the absentee list.
LATE ARRIVAL TO SCHOOL
- Students arriving to school after 10:40 AM will be charged with a 1/2 day absence.
- An excuse card will be required.
EARLY RELEASE REQUEST – DURING SCHOOL DAY
Students will be dismissed early only when the office approves a signed note from the parent requesting early release on
any given day. Parents should report to the school office to pick up students. If early dismissal occurs before 2:00 PM, the
student will be charged with a 1/2 day absence. An excuse card will be required.
EDUCATIONAL TRAVEL/VACATION DAYS
The School District recognizes that from time to time, students may have the opportunity to participate in pre-planned trips and educational experiences during the regular school year. Upon receipt of prior written request from the parents or guardian of the pupils involved, pupils may be excused from school attendance to participate in educational tours or trips,
when the Superintendent or designee evaluates such trip. The determination of each request will be made on the following: prior attendance records, previous requests, frequency of such requests, and the educational value of the
An Educational Travel Form should be submitted to the office 5 days prior to the date of departure. It is to be understood by each student and parent that class work missed during the period of absence will be made up. Students will generally be limited to five (5) days of education travel. A separate form should be signed for each student within the Eastern Lancaster County Schools.
It is the school’s desire to work closely with parents concerning regular school attendance. Please feel free to contact the office if you have any questions concerning this policy.