Truancy, SART & Excessive Excused Absence Letters

  • What attendance counts towards truancy?

    The following attendance markings all contribute towards truancy as all are forms of unexcused absences: unverified (UNV), unexcused (UNX), no contact (NOC), tardy (TDY), cut (CUT) & immunization shots needed (IZ).

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    • Did you receive a Truancy Letter?

    *FIRST NOTIFICATION OF TRUANCY - Your student has been marked absent on 3 or more occasions. In high school with multiple classes, this can mean they have been marked in a single class or the full day.  Schools are required by California law to notify the parents when 3 or more unexcused period absences or 3 full school day absences.

    *SECOND NOTIFICATION OF TRUANCY - Student has been marked absent on 8 or more occasions. You will be invited to attend a mandatory SART meeting that is scheduled at a future date. Absence from the SART meeting &/or a lack of improved attendance from the student may result in a referral to the District Office for a SARB meeting.

    *THIRD NOTIFICATION OF TRUANCY - A SART has ben held and your student has been marked absent a total of 11 or more times. You and your student may be referred to the District Office for a mandatory SARB meeting. SARB meetings are considered legal matters; the parent/guardian and student are required by law to attend. If a SARB meeting has already been held at this point, your student may be administratively transferred to another school for violation of their SARB contract, &/or you may be referred to the District Attorney's office for truancy court.

    *EXCESSIVE EXCUSED ABSENCE -  Student has been marked IPV on at least 5 different occasions thus far. This letter primarily serves as a reminder that students are only allotted 10 IPV absences for the school year (per FCUSD). If possible, please obtain and provide a medical note to turn into the school for future absences, to avoid exceeding the 10 and accruing unexcused absences.

    • NOTE: Contact your student’s Assistant Principal regarding your upcoming SART meeting if you have any questions or need to reschedule. The meeting will be held on Cordova High School’s campus. This is a meeting is a restorative opportunity, in hopes of building the student’s success in their academic career.  There will be interpreters available if requested in advance.

    • Your student’s AP alpha is by the student’s last name:

    • Michele Brown: A - D

    • Cody Owens: E - L

    • Dr. Freddy Castro: M - R

    • Dr. Carrie Jackson: S- Z

    Quick tips to avoid truancy, SART &/or SARB meetings:

      • Excuse all absences within 10 school days with a parent phone call, an email or a signed parent note.

      • If there is an error in your attendance and you received a call home saying you were marked absent, have your student see the Attendance Clerk immediately.

      • Remember you only allowed 10 parent verified absences each school year (IPV).  Always get a doctor note as those are coded differently (IMV) and will not count against your 10 allowable absences.

      • Students: always attend your classes on time.

    California Education Codes

    ARTICLE 5. Truants [48260 - 48273]  ( Article 5 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )


    (a) A pupil subject to compulsory full-time education or to compulsory continuation education who is absent from school without a valid excuse three full days in one school year or tardy or absent for more than a 30-minute period during the schoolday without a valid excuse on three occasions in one school year, or any combination thereof, shall be classified as a truant and shall be reported to the attendance supervisor or to the superintendent of the school district.

    (b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), it is the intent of the Legislature that school districts shall not change the method of attendance accounting provided for in existing law and shall not be required to employ period-by-period attendance accounting.

    (c) For purposes of this article, a valid excuse includes, but is not limited to, the reasons for which a pupil shall be excused from school pursuant to Sections 48205 and 48225.5 and may include other reasons that are within the discretion of school administrators and, based on the facts of the pupil’s circumstances, are deemed to constitute a valid excuse.

    In addition to the reporting requirement, the law states that the school district must notify the parent or guardian of the truant by the most cost-effective method possible, and that the notification must include specific information related to the student's unexcused absences. The EC Section regarding notification reads as follows:

    EC Section 48260.5:

    Upon a pupil's initial classification as a truant, the school district shall notify the pupil's parent or guardian, by using the most cost-effective method possible, which may include electronic mail or a telephone call:

    (a) That the pupil is a truant.

    (b) That the parent or guardian is obligated to compel the attendance of the pupil at school.

    (c) That parents or guardians who fail to meet this obligation may be guilty of an infraction and subject to prosecution pursuant to Article 6 (commencing with Section 48290) of Chapter 2 of Part 27.

    (d) That alternative educational programs are available in the district.

    (e) That the parent or guardian has the right to meet with appropriate school personnel to discuss solutions to the pupil's truancy.

    (f) That the pupil may be subject to prosecution under Section 48264.

    (g) For a pupil under 18 years of age but 13 years of age or older, that the pupil may be subject to suspension, restriction, or delay of the pupil’s driving privilege pursuant to Section 13202.7 of the Vehicle Code.

    (h) That it is recommended the parent or guardian accompany the pupil to school and attend classes with the pupil for one day.

    Section 48263.6:

    Any pupil subject to compulsory full-time education or to compulsory continuation education who is absent from school without a valid excuse for 10 percent or more of the schooldays in one school year, from the date of enrollment to the current date, is deemed a chronic truant, provided that the appropriate school district officer or employee has complied with Sections 48260, 48260.5, 48261, 48262, 48263, and 48291.