Absence Notification
Parents will be notified when students are absent from school without parent notification, and reminded of the need to contact the school as soon as possible. School records shall be corrected from unverified to excused or unexcused after parent contact.

Early Release of Students
When a student leaves the school premises during regular school hours for any reason, parents must provide advance notice and permission and comply with release procedures. A principal shall not release a student during the school day to any person not authorized to assume responsibility for the student. All students, including declared 18-year-olds, must comply with established release procedures.

Late Arrivals
It is important to attend school every school day and arrive on time. Any student arriving after the official start of the class or school day will be considered late. When students arrive late at school they must use appropriate school-based check in procedures. Records regarding tardiness will be maintained and appropriate discipline imposed for recurring tardiness.

Parent Explanation of Absence
Parents should notify the school prior to, or at the start of, the school day when their child will be absent. When a student has been absent from school for any reason other than for a school sponsored activity, and the parents have not previously contacted the school, the parent must send written or electronic communication citing the reason(s) for the absence to the school office no later than five days following the student's return to school.

Excused Absences

Examples of an excused absence may include, but are not limited to, the following reasons: illness (including mental health and substance use illnesses), injury, funeral for immediate family member, student's legal obligations, medical procedures, suspensions, religious observances, military obligation, deployment of a military family member, or visit from a family member who has immediately returned from deployment, emergency conditions in the student's home, or other reason deemed acceptable by the principal.

Unexcused Absences

Examples of unexcused absences include, but are not limited to, missing a ride, bus, car trouble, all day or period absence with or without parent knowledge, and absences where the parent has not provided appropriate explanation or requested documentation, such as a physician's letter.

Prearranged Absences

Parents are encouraged to minimize absences during school hours, and to plan family trips and vacations during school holidays. Requests for prearranged absences for longer than one school day, should be for extenuating circumstances and must be submitted in writing to the principal within a reasonable time for the school to review, approve, and assign the absence type of excused or unexcused. Due to varied demands on teachers for make-up work, teachers shall have discretion to decide the type and amount of work and when students shall make up work for preapproved absences. Teachers shall not be required to provide assignments in
advance of the absences but may do so at their discretion. Parents and students are encouraged to work with teachers prior to the absence to develop a plan for making up missed work, including expected deadlines.

Chronic Absenteeism
Chronic absenteeism, missing more than ten percent of the school year for any reason, has been associated with lower reading and math achievement in elementary grades, and class failure and drop out at the secondary level.

Mandatory Withdrawal
In order to comply with Virginia Department of Education recordkeeping requirements, students shall be withdrawn from PWCS student membership rolls after 15 consecutive days of absence regardless of whether their absences are excused or unexcused. Withdrawn students are not excused from mandatory school attendance requirements and are expected to reenroll as soon as possible. Students who withdraw to attend a non-PWCS school should notify the previously attended school as soon as possible and make reasonable attempts to follow the withdrawal procedures.

Regulation 724-1

Policy 724