Positive attendance supports student achievement and FCUSD has always maintained attendance policies and procedures to support student attendance. District and school encouragement are for every student to be present for instruction and to be marked in attendance. Not only are missed days of instruction a correlation for falling behind academically, but the return day can also be challenging with extra work as the student catches up on missed instruction.
In response to the challenges of taking attendance during Distance Learning, the District has made modifications to allow for attendance record keeping to continue, reasonably and within the structure of synchronous and asynchronous student schedules. During Distance Learning, teachers and schools are able to mark a student’s attendance using several measures. Absences will also be noted. The following information outlines what is considered when marking a student as in attendance or absent. Please keep reading.
Until we are able to return to campus to take attendance in person, we are able to mark a student’s as IN ATTENDANCE if a student shows evidence in one or more of the following:
● Participation in online activities
● Participation in synchronous classroom activities
● Completion of asynchronous activities/assignments,
If a student does not demonstrate evidence in one or more of these measurements, they will be marked ABSENT.
ATTENDANCE: POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Below are the District's policies and procedures regarding attendance during Distance Learning. Please review the following information and reporting procedures.
Due to daily participation requirements specified above, students will not be marked late or tardy during Distance Learning.
Student safety will always remain our number one concern and school staff will follow up with parents/guardians should there be no student contact in a school day.
Parents/guardians are asked to notify their student’s school 24-hour Attendance Office Line if the student will not be connecting for daily instruction. For specified site information, including the 24-hour Attendance Office Line please contact the school directly. For a list of all schools, please visit: www.fcusd.org/schools
If your student misses school, please note the following steps:
● Parents must clear all absences within 5 school days.
● To clear a student's absence, parents/guardians are asked to call the school’s automated attendance number. This line is available 24 hours a day.
○ A parent/guardian can also deliver a note or email the school. Anyone going on campus is asked to please observe all on-campus safety protocols and posted signs.
● If the school notifies the parent/guardian of an unexcused absence, the parent/guardian must respond within five days.
○ Non-responses after five days will be recorded as a truancy.
● A cleared absence will be coded as excused or unexcused, depending on the reason for the absence, per California Education Code and Folsom Cordova Unified School District Board policy. Please keep reading for more information on excused and unexcused absences.
EXCUSED AND UNEXCUSED ABSENCES
VERIFICATION OF ILLNESS:
Folsom Cordova Unified School District allows the student’s parent/guardian to excuse up to 10 days (or the equivalent number of periods) without verification of illness from a medical professional. Absences after 10 days will be recorded as unexcused unless verification from a medical professional is provided.
Verification from a medical provider for an absence due to an illness or medical appointment can be accepted at any time, will be recorded as verified, and will not take away from the 10-day parent excused limit.
LEGALLY EXCUSED ABSENCES:
● Quarantine under the direction of a county or city health office
● Medical, dental, optometry, chiropractic, or mental health services
● Attendance at funeral services for a member of an immediate family
● Jury duty in the manner provided by law
● The pupil is a custodian of a child who is ill or has a medical appointment during school
● For the purpose of serving as a member of a precinct board for an election
● For the purpose of spending time with a member of the student’s family, who is an active duty member of the uniformed services, as defined in Section 49701, and has been called to duty for, is on leave from, or has immediately returned from deployment to a combat zone or combat-support position
● For the purpose of attending the student's naturalization ceremony to become a U.S. Citizen
● Religious holidays
The following may be excused by the principal with advance approval:
● Court Appearance
● Employment Interview
Unexcused absences are considered truancies and contribute to chronic absenteeism. Some examples of unexcused absences can include:
● Out of town
● Family vacation
● Any illness other than the student's illness
● Accompanying a parent to a parent's appointment
SHORT-TERM INDEPENDENT STUDY:
If a child will be out of school for five or more days for an unexcused absence, there is an option to obtain a short-term, Independent Study Contract, which would allow for a student to continue coursework and be marked IN ATTENDANCE. Parents/guardians interested in pursuing an Independent Study Contract must contact the school’s office at least two weeks in advance of the absence to inquire and make arrangements.
To foster each student’s success in independent study, the following maximum length of time which may elapse between the time an assignment is given and the date by which the independent study assignment is due:
Students in grades Kindergarten through 5: 20 school days
Students in grades 6 through 12: 15 school days
When special circumstances justify a longer period of time, a written request is to be sent to the Director of Behavior Intervention & Student Services for consideration.
Please note: Independent Study Contracts are granted and provided at the discretion of the teacher and principal and dependent upon the teacher’s availability to coordinate the necessary curriculum and instructions.
Chronic absenteeism is defined as missing 10 percent or more of the school year, which is equivalent to 18 days out of a 180-day school year regardless of whether absences are excused or unexcused.
State law defines a truant as a student who has an unexcused absence or is more than 30 minutes tardy three or more days in one school year or a combination of unexcused absences and over 30-minute tardies.
Please note: During Distance Learning there will be no tardy or late marks. Tardy and late recording will not resume until students are able to return to campus for in-person learning.
Written notices of truancy are required by law. Parents will receive a letter if their student has 3 or more unexcused absences.
Additional truancy letters are sent at 6 and 9 unexcused absences (Tru 2 & Tru 3 letters)
Please note: School administration may conduct a parent meeting to discuss attendance concerns at any time.
BRIGHT FUTURES BEGIN WITH GOOD ATTENDANCE!
The policies above outline District standard attendance policies, with modifications due to Distance Learning. If you have any questions or are facing difficulties with regards to attendance please reach out to your school site principal.