Build the Habit of Good Attendance
Showing up for school has a huge impact on a student’s academic success starting in kindergarten. Even as children grow older and more independent, families play a key role in making sure students get to school on time every day.
Did you Know?
- Students should miss no more than 9 days of school each year to stay engaged, successful and on track to graduation.
- Absences can be a sign that a student is losing interest in school, struggling with school work, dealing with a bully or facing some other potentially serious difficulty.
- By 6th grade, absenteeism is one of three warning signs that a student may drop out of high school.
- By 9th grade, regular attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than 8th grade test scores.
- Missing 10 percent or about 18 days, of the school year can drastically affect a student’s academic success.
- Students can be chronically absent even if they only miss a day or two every few weeks.
- Attendance is an important life skill that will help your child graduate from college and keep a job.
What You Can Do
- Make school attendance a priority: Create the expectation that your child will show up, schedule doctor or dental appointments after school, do not let your child stay home unless truly sick. Complaints of stomach aches or headaches may be signs of anxiety leading to attendance problems. If you notice a pattern of complaints, please contact your child’s school counselor.
- Help your teen stay engaged: Extra-curricular activities help your teen feel a sense of belonging.
- Stay on top of your child’s social contacts: This puts a damper on potential peer pressure issues.
- Communicate with the school: Ensure teachers know how to contact you. Talk to teachers if you see a sudden change in behavior. Keep an eye on attendance through PowerSchool.
- Know Attendance Policy: See below for details!
Excused and Unexcused Absences
Students who are absent must bring a note on the first day they return to school stating reason(s) for their absences.
Acceptable excuses are: illness (if over two days, the school may require a note from the doctor), court appearance, death in the family, religious holidays , field trips and school-related activities, extenuating circumstances determined by the school administration.
NOTE: Family trips and vacations are unexcused absences even if you call in advance of the trip.
Goochland Attendance Policy
Every parent, guardian, or other person having control or charge of any child who will have reached the fifth birthday on or before September 30 of any school year and who has not passed the eighteenth birthday shall send such child to a public school or otherwise provide the child with an education in accordance with state law unless the child is exempt from the state’s compulsory attendance requirement.
—Code of Virginia, 1950, as amended, § 22.1-254.
- Upon a student’s third (3rd) and fourth (4th) unexcused absences, attendance letters will be sent home.
- Upon a student’s fifth (5th) unexcused absence without parental awareness and support, a school official will directly contact the parent to collaboratively develop a plan to resolve the student’s nonattendance. Such a plan will include documentation of the reasons for the student’s nonattendance.
- Upon a student’s sixth (6th) unexcused absence without parental awareness and support, the school principal or designee will notify the attendance officer who shall enforce compulsory attendance law by either or both of the following: (i) filing a complaint with the juvenile and domestic relations court alleging the student is a child in need of supervision as defined in Virginia Code § 16.1-228 or (ii) instituting proceedings against the parent pursuant to § 18.2-371 or § 22.1-262.
For more, please see GCPS policy JED.
Illness and School Attendance
KEEP YOUR CHILD HOME IF:
- your child has a temperature of 100F or greater. Children must be fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication.
- your child has the flu, is vomiting, has diarrhea, impetigo, conjunctivitis (pink eye), chicken pox, or Strep throat.
- your child has lice. Please notify the school if your child contracts lice. Children must not return to school until treated. Proof of treatment must be brought to school on date of return.
Parents or guardians are required to call the school when their child is going to be absent. A note is required when the child returns to school stating the reason for the absence. When a child is absent due to illness and a parent or guardian wishes to pick up homework for that day, please notify the office by 9 a.m. to give teachers time to assemble work during their planning times and send it to the office.
Please call your child’s school.
- Goochland Middle School 804-556-5320
- Goochland High School 804-556-5322