Skip to main content

Attendance Policy


Schools are required to take daily attendance.

If your student will miss any classes for a state-approved reason,

please call or email our CJH Attendance Secretary.

Molly McConaghy. 

253-566-5670 ext. 5618


**** Please note that parent knowledge of an absence is not sufficient reason for the absence to be excused.***  

   Please see the state approved reasons below.



     1. WAC 392-401-015A states the definition of an absence:

     2. A student is absent when they are:

          a. Not physically present on school grounds; and

          b. Not participating in the following activities at an approved location:

               i. Instruction;

               ii. Any instruction-related activity; or

               iii. Any other district or school approved activity that is regulated by an instructional/academic

                   accountability system, such as participation in district-sponsored sports.

               iv. On school grounds and not in assigned seating.



The parent/guardian will be notified, on the documented primary phone number, by the Auto Dialer on the day of an unexcused absence. Attendance letters will be sent to parents/guardians at three, five, seven and fifteen unexcused absences.



  A.  Absences due to the following reasons must be excused:

        1.  Physical health or mental health symptoms, illness, health condition or medical appointment for the student or person

             for whom the student is legally responsible.Examples of symptoms, illness, health conditions, or medical appointment

             include, but are not limited to, medical, counseling, mental health wellness, dental, optometry, pregnancy, and

             behavioral health treatment (which can include in-patient or out-patient treatment for chemical depend ency or mental health);

        2. Family emergency, including, but not limited to, a death or illness in the family;

        3. Religious or cultural purpose, including observance of a religious or cultural holiday or participation in religious or cultural instruction;

        4. Court, judicial proceeding, court-ordered activity, or jury service;

        5. Post-secondary, technical school or apprenticeship program visitation, or scholarship interview;

        6. State-recognized search and rescue activities consistent with RCW 28A.225.055;

        7. Absence directly related to the student’s homeless or foster care/dependency status

        8. Absences related to deployment activities of a parent who is an active duty member consistent with RCW 28A.705.010;

        9. Absences due to suspensions, expulsions or emergency expulsions imposed pursuant to chapter 392-400 WAC if the student is not                  receiving educational services and is not enrolled in qualifying “course of study” activities as defined in WAC 392-121-107;

        10. Absences due to student safety concerns, including absences related to threats, assaults, or bullying;

        11. Absences due to a student’s migrant status;

        12. An approved activity that is consistent with district policy and is mutually agreed upon by the principal or designee

              and a parent or emancipated youth;


        13. Absences due to the student’s lack of necessary instructional tools, including internet broadband access or connectivity.


    B.  In the event of emergency school facility closure due to COVID-19, other communicable disease outbreak, natural disaster, or other

         event when districts are required to provide synchronous and asynchronous instruction, absences due to the following reasons

         are excused:

         1.   Absences related to the student’s illness, health condition, or medical appointments due to COVID-19 or other

               communicable disease;

          2.   Absences related to caring for a family member who has an illness, health condition, or medical appointment due to

                COVID-19, other communicable disease, or other emergency health condition related to school facility closures;

         3.    Absences related to the student’s family obligations during regularly scheduled school hours that are temporarily

               necessary because of school facility closures, until other arrangements can be made; and

         4.    Absences due to the student’s parent’s work schedule or other obligations during regular ly scheduled school hours,

                until other arrangements can be made.

School districts may define additional categories or criteria for excused absences. 


A school principal or designee has the authority to determine if an absence meets the above criteria for an excused absence.

School districts may define additional categories or criteria for excused absences.  As required by law, absences due to

disciplinary actions or short-term suspensions will be excused. 


If an absence is excused, the student will be permitted to make up all missed assignments outside of class under reasonable

conditions and time limits established by the appropriate teacher.  If a student misses a class with an emphasis on

participation, they can request an alternative assignment that aligns with the learning goals of the activity missed.


In addition, the principal may, upon request by a parent and/or guardian, grant permission in advance for a student's absence

providing such absence does not adversely affect the student’s educational progress.  These absences and absences for

vacation purposes are strongly discouraged and a planned absence form must be completed and submitted to the Attendance

Office prior to absence. 



Any absence from school for the majority of hours or periods in an average school day is unexcused unless it

meets one of the criteria above for an excused absence. Unexcused absences occur when:

     1. The parent, guardian, or adult student submits an excuse that does not meet the definition of an excused

         absence as defined above; or

     2. The parent, guardian, or adult student fails to submit any type of excuse statement, whether by phone,   

         Skyward/Family Access, e-mail or in writing, for an absence.



Truancy is a violation of State Law. A student who misses class without excuse or leaves campus without proper

authorization will be considered truant from school. Students who skip class are subject to disciplinary action.

Truant students may not be allowed to make up work. Habitual truancies are subject to disciplinary action. In such

cases, a parent/guardian will be notified of continued truancy, and a conference held with an administrator.



The Becca Bill addresses the issue of unexcused student absences from school. In compliance with that legislation,

the following steps are followed:

     1. Parents will be informed by either phone or written correspondence after one (1) unexcused absence for a

         student within any month during the current school year.

     2. After three (3) unexcused absences in any month during the school year, a parent/guardian conference will

         be required.

     3. Between the second (2) and seventh (7) unexcused absence, in a year, the school will ad minister a screener

         and take data-informed steps to reduce the student’s absences.

     4. On or after the seventh (7) unexcused absences in a month, the school shall enter into an agreement with

         the student and parent/guardian that establishes school attendance re quirements, refer student to a

         Community En gagement Board, or File a petition under sub section 1 of RCW 28A.225.030.

     5. After a student has accumulated seven (7) unexcused absences in a month, and not later than fifteen (15)

         cumulative unexcused absences in a school year, the district is required to file a truancy petition with the

         court. The re spondent to the petition will be the student if 12 years of age or older. (RCW 28A.225.010)



Students may not leave the school because of illness without parent/guardian authorization AND permission from

either the school nurse, health room supervisor or school administrator. Students must be evaluated in the health

room before requesting to leave school due to illness. The school nurse or designee will notify parents/guardian if

it is determined that the student is too ill to remain at school.



Parents may call the Attendance Office at ext.5618 to request an early dismissal. Students missing any/all class

time will be expected to make up any school work missed as a result of the dismissal.



Students are expected to be on time to school and to their classes. Being on time to class is important because it

increases the instructional time for the student, reduces the interruptions to the learning environment and

improves the quality and time for all students. Being on time also reduces stress for students, is a practice valued

by business and society, and teaches time management.


Tardiness is defined as:

     1. Any student who is not in their classroom when the second bell rings is considered tardy. Teachers can also

         define other additional and reasonable on time criteria.

     2. Students should be sitting in their assigned seat and ready to learn by the time the second (tardy) bell has rung.


Students who are consistently tardy to their classes are subject to disciplinary action.