Attendance Procedures

Attendance

Distance Learning: Due to the Distance Learn Mandate, it is imperative to student success that attendance is maintained daily in ALL live class meetings. Poor attendance may result in court action, home visits, and phone calls home. Parents and guardians are responsible for notifying the school of connectivity issues and any other barriers your student(s) may be experiencing. We are committed to helping find solutions.

Valley High School is committed to having students learn and practice life skills. One major life skill that is expected to be practiced EVERYDAY for EVERY PERIOD is PUNCTUALITY.

Students who are consistently punctual and present every day at Valley High will have opportunities for various prizes and/or celebrations. We value students who demonstrate virtues of success like REGULAR ATTENDANCE and PUNCTUALITY. These are traits that lead to SUCCESS.

State law requires that all minors attend school full-time. In order to benefit fully from the Valley High School academic and extra-curricular programs and make progress toward graduation, students must attend school regularly. Irregular attendance negatively affects class progress and grades.  Attendance is taken each period and is noted in the teacher’s roll book and in the electronic attendance system. Parents are encouraged to work with Valley High School in supporting students’ regular and timely attendance.  They may call the school’s attendance office during school hours to check on their child’s tardy and absence record.

 

Types of Absences

Excused Absence/Late Arrival

There are only 5 reasons that the State of California will allow a child to be absent or late to school. These reasons are:

  1. The student is sick.
  2. The student has a medical or dental appointment.
  3. The student goes to a funeral of a close relative (parent, sibling, and grandparent).
  4. Medical Quarantine (i.e., COVID-19, head lice, impetigo, behind on shots).
  5. Personal reason (court appearance, or religious holiday).  The site principal

or designee must approve absences as soon as possible.

 Parents are required to call the school to report absences on the day the absence occurs. A written note from the parent/guardian stating the reason for the student’s absence may be submitted to the attendance office on the day the student returns if the parent/guardian has not called the school previously. California Education code requires that excused absences be cleared within 48 hours of absence. Parents are encouraged to utilize ParentVue to monitor their student(s)’ attendance.

 

Unexcused Absence/Late Arrival

Any “unexcused absence” or “uncleared absence” equals a truancy. Examples of unexcused absences:

  1. Student/parent overslept
  2. Baby-sitting
  3. No clean clothes                            
  4. Weather
  5. Car/transportation problems            
  6. Vacations

Truancy Consequences

  • Truant (E.C. 48260) absent from school without permission – Counseling Intervention.
  • Habitual truant (E.C. 48262) any student, truant three or more times per school year –Counseling Intervention.
  • Students who are habitually truant will be referred to the Attendance Improvement Office.

Early Dismissals

When picking your student(s) up prior to dismissal, please note that a valid form of government issued identification must be furnished to authorize the early release. You will face significant delays and run the risk of not being able to pick your student up if you do not have proper identification. Lastly, in an effort to reduce classroom disruptions, early dismissals are not possible in the final 20 minutes of the academic day. For most days, that means early dismissals cannot be guaranteed after 2:50 PM.  Please plan ahead and be prepared if you need your student to have an early dismissal.

 Monitoring Attendance

Parents and guardians are encouraged to download the app: ParentVUE to monitor and track their student’s attendance and grades. This software can be utilized from any smartphone or other internet device.

 If accessing ParentVUE is not an option, parent/guardians can make a weekly attendance call which is an extremely effective strategy for parents/guardians to monitor student attendance.  This resource allows parents/guardians to call Valley High School (689-6500) every Monday or Tuesday and ask one of our clerical staff to check their student’s previous week’s attendance.  The call will take just a few minutes and provides parents/guardians with information about their student’s attendance habits.  The school recommends Monday or Tuesday in order to develop a consistent routine, although parents can call any day of the week. 

 Automated Daily Attendance Calls

The automated system will contact the parent at 10:30AM and 6:00PM notifying them of a student’s absence.  It will call all guardians on their home and cell numbers and will also email all guardians who have an email address in our student information system.  In addition, the automated system will SMS Text message any guardians who have opted in to receive Text Message Alerts.  The school strongly recommends that a parent/guardian also utilize a Daily Attendance Check or the Parent/Guardian Weekly Attendance Call.

 

Students Arriving Beyond 30 minutes into School Day or Returning from an Early Dismissal:

Although state law does not recognize any form of “excused tardy”, Valley High School knows that sometimes situations arise that causes a student to be legitimately late to class.  These situations could include a flat tire, illness of a sibling, etc.  In these cases, a student MUST bring a note from his/her parent/guardian to the attendance office window.  The student will be issued a “re-admit” and allowed onto campus and into class.  It is difficult for the school to determine why a student is late without a note from his/her parent/guardian.  Students without a note and arriving excessively late will receive a detention.

 

Sending your student with a note to excuse tardiness does not necessarily excuse your student from potential consequences. Teachers have the right to assign consequences for chronic lateness even with parental note that is not substantiated by an official medical note from a doctor.

 

Re-admit notes should include student’s name, date, time, reason for tardiness (“personal issue” is an acceptable reason) and a phone number where the parent or guardian could be reached.  The school may contact the parent/guardian to check on the validity of the “re-admit.”  Occasionally students forge a note and in some rare cases, repeatedly forge notes. 

 Please DO NOT interpret this contact as a question of any parental responsibilities.  Valley has found that parents/guardians appreciate this follow-up and students tend to avoid or decrease inappropriate practices when they know the school randomly checks validity.

Tardiness

Distance Learning: Students are expected to log on in a consistent timely fashion. Patterns of tardiness in logging on late or leaving early will result in parent conference and potential administration intervention.

Students are considered tardy if they are not inside the classroom when the bell rings. Students who are in their seats when the bell rings are practicing optimal habits.

Students are given TEN MINUTES for passing periods between classes on most days. Exceptions will apply on days that have unique schedules like extended Viking Time days or PSAT days. It is the student’s responsibility to know the given schedule for the day as described in this handbook and communicated throughout the year in numerous ways.

Excessive lateness is a nonproductive habit. Students who are chronically late miss out on important material and disrupt the learning environment for the many students who arrive on time. This policy was developed to let students know that they are wanted IN CLASS ON TIME. All students are to acquaint themselves with the tardy policy that is included in every class syllabus. Each teacher reserves the right to tailor the following policies to his/her classes. It is the student’s responsibility to know and understand the dynamics of each of their teachers’ tardy policies. Students are considered late if both feet are not inside the door when the final tardy bell finishes its ring. Tardy Sweeps are in effect for EVERY PERIOD EVERY DAY including 1st and 2nd periods.

As a general rule of thumb, the following semester-long policies are in place to maximize time in the classroom for ALL students:

STUDENTS ARRIVING LATE WILL FACE PROGRESSIVE CONSEQUENCES

  • Issuance of detention which may include lunch, after school, and Saturday School
  • Excessive tardiness and/or failure to remedy detentions may result in loss of privileges and placement on the No Activities List.

 

Students who fail to adhere to the tardy detention policy are subject to the following progressive consequences:

(1) Parent Conferences with Administration

(2) No Activities list until cleared which includes rallies

(3) In some instances related to outward defiance, On Campus or Home Suspension

 Second Semester Senior Truancy Policy

Seniors with 7 or more period cuts/truancies or unexcused absences and/or 9 or more period tardies during the 2nd and/or 3rd grading period of the spring semester will lose access to senior activities, including the Senior Prom and Graduation. 

  1.  For the 6-week time frame running from February 19th through March 29th.  Any senior who accumulates 7 or more unexcused period absences/cuts, may not be allowed to attend the Prom.
  2.  For the 6-week time frame running from April 8th through Friday, May 24th.  Any senior who accumulates 7 or more unexcused period absences/cuts during this time frame may not be allowed to participate in final Senior Activities.

 Change of Address

Parents/guardians are to notify the Attendance Office immediately of any change in address, telephone number, or guardianship.  Failure to report a change in address is the number one challenge the school faces when trying to implement a strong home/school communication program.

 Withdrawals & Transfers

Any student withdrawing or transferring from Valley High School must report to the Attendance Office for a clearance sheet.  A parent/guardian must either accompany the student or notify the Attendance Office to request the student be withdrawn from school. The clearance sheet must be signed and approved by the Attendance Office, all teachers, and the librarian before the student returns it to the Attendance Office.  The student must return all textbooks and other school materials and pay all fines/fees prior to withdrawal.  The student must turn in his/her ID card.

 Attendance Improvement Office (AIO) Letters

An AIO (Attendance Improvement Office) Letter is generated when students have multiple unexcused absences or too many excused absences.  The first AIO letter is sent directly to a parent/guardian from the school district.  After the first letter, if a student’s attendance patterns do not change, a second “notification” letter, an AIO conference or even a Truancy Hearing can be initiated by the school district. If a parent/guardian receives an AIO letter they are encouraged to contact their student’s Vice Principal or counselor at (916) 689-6500.  Continuous improvement in regular school attendance will suspend the AIO notification process.

 1st AIO Letter

  • Letter is generated by District after 3rd truancy or 14th excused absence.
  • Principal or designees will conference with student concerning attendance.
  • Copy of signed letter is filed for further action.

    2nd AIO Letter

  • The school district generates letter when there is no improvement in attendance.  The 2nd letter may be generated within 10 school days.
  • Parent is requested to contact the school within 5 school days to schedule a conference. 
  • Copy of signed letter is filed in 2nd letter section of AIO binder.

     PACT (Parents Against Chronic Truancy) Letter

  • This letter is generated for families who have received an AIO 2 letter. This letter is a request by the District’s Attorney’s Office to meet with parents/guardians to discuss the importance of attending school. Under state law, parents/guardians are responsible for the regular attendance of their children.

 3rd AIO Letter

  • The school district generates this final letter when there is no improvement in attendance and all other attempts to correct poor attendance have been unsuccessful. 
  • The third AIO letter will notify parents/guardians of a potential truancy hearing. 

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