When it comes to learning, every single school day counts. Research shows that attendance plays an important role in academic success, which affects success in life. Simply put, students must attend school in order to benefit from it.
Just two missed days of school every month, for any reason, can cause a child to suffer academically and decrease the chances that he or she will graduate. Absences add up—and subtract from learning.
Excused absences and tardies are time spent out of school for:
Illness—a doctor’s note is required if a student is ill for five or more days in a month, unless the principal, for good cause, waives the requirement
Health care appointments
Emergencies, including but not limited to a death or illness in the family
Religious or cultural activities, including observance of a religious or cultural holiday or participation in religious or cultural instruction
Participation in a district- or school-approved activity or instructional program as approved by the principal
Deployment activities of an active duty military parent or guardian
Prearranged absences that the principal (or designee) and parent agree upon on. The school cannot excuse absences for trips taken by students unless these trips involve direct supervision by the school or the family.
Absences must be excused by a parent within three days. It is the responsibility of the student or parent to arrange for any makeup work.
Unexcused absences do not meet the above criteria for an excused absence and carry the following consequences:
After two unexcused absences, the school will schedule a conference with the student and parent.
After five unexcused absences, school officials will enter into an attendance agreement and plan with the student and parent.
After seven unexcused absences in a month, or 10 in a year, the student will be referred to the district’s student welfare and attendance office, which is required to file a petition in juvenile court alleging a violation of Washington state’s mandatory attendance law.
If an absence/tardy is not called in, the student must check in with the attendance office upon arrival and bring a note by the following day or he/she will be considered truant. Truancy is missing class or school without permission.
A student is tardy when he or she enters the classroom after the tardy bell and within the first 15 minutes of class time. It is considered an unexcused absence if the student is more than 15 minutes late to class. Teachers will address the first four tardies before referring the student to an administrator for progressive discipline.
Discovery Middle School is a closed campus. This means once a student arrives on campus, he or she may not leave without first giving written parental permission to the attendance office in the morning. This includes students leaving campus after being dropped off by buses or parents in the morning.
Parents/guardians should check in at the office and sign out their children when taking them out of school early. Failure to do so will result in truancy, regardless of later returning to school with a note from a parent/guardian. If the child returns during the school day, the parent/guardian should sign them in again at the office.
Our building is open to students for breakfast at 8:30 a.m. Students should leave campus by 3:45 p.m. unless they are involved in an after-school activity or under the direct supervision of a staff member.