- Rowe Lane Elementary School
Absences and Attendance
Regular school attendance is essential for a student to make the most of his or her education – to benefit from teacher-led and school activities, to build on the previous day’s learning and to grow as an individual. Absences from class may result in serious disruption of a student’s mastery of the instructional materials; therefore, the parent should make every effort to avoid unnecessary absences.
Signing Your Student Out
If your student needs to leave campus after the school day has officially started, you will need to come in to the front office to check him / her out. Please be prepared to show your ID for your student’s safety. If you send a friend or family member to pick up your student, the person must be on your student’s emergency contact list. You can contact our Registrar, Megan Dubouzet (email@example.com) to have the person added. This email must come from the email address we have on file for your student and include the following information – student name, birthdate of student, person’s name to be added and their contact phone number.
Please fill out the student sign in / out log completely. This information will include your student’s name, your signature, time out and reason. If your student returns to campus the same day, please sign in on the same line that you signed him / her out.
Students signed out before 9:30 am will incur an absence for the day. Please keep in mind that when you sign your student out, this does not qualify as a parent note.
Focus Parent Portal
If you feel your student has received an absence that is a mistake, please contact your student’s teacher. The teacher will then contact the Registrar with a correction or explain why the student received the absence. This request must be made within 1 week of the absence that you are inquiring about.
You can determine which day has the absence by logging on to the Focus Parent Portal and selecting the Absences tab. This will show you the date the absence occurred. It also shows you the code and what the code means.
If you are not on the Focus Parent Portal, it is highly recommended that you sign up for it. To check on your status for access, please contact Quinlyn Barnette, Rowe Lane Registrar.
Documentation After An Absence
When a student is absent from school, a note should be provided to document why he / she was absent. There are a few types of notes, including but not limited to: a health care professional note, a parent note, official religious holiday documentation from the organization, a DFPS note, or a court appearance note. These appointments must be for the student and not a family member.
Notes must be turned in within 3 days of the student’s return to campus. There are 4 ways notes can be turned in.
- Your student may turn it in to the front office, preferably right after his / her return to school, either that day when he / she is signing back in or the following morning if it was an afternoon appointment.
- You email the Registrar directly for it to be considered a parent note or you can scan the health care professional note and email it to the Registrar – firstname.lastname@example.org
- It can be faxed to (512) 594-6605.
- It can be turned in to the student’s teacher, who will then turn it in to the front office.
Notes should be entered within 48 hours (except on Fridays or before breaks) from when the Registrar receives it.
Doctor Notes with Restrictions
If your student returns to campus and the doctor note has restriction for PE or recess, please have a copy for your student to give to the coach and / or teacher. This is the best way to ensure the note reaches the proper person. Notes turned in to the front office do not always get seen before your student has his / her class that requires the restrictions.
If your student is going to be absent, please email (email@example.com) and your student’s teacher to report your student’s absence. If you report it this way, this will be considered a parent note. If you take the student to the doctor while they are out, their attendance record will be changed to reflect this upon the doctor note being turned in. You are also welcome to send a note with your student when he / she returns if the absence hadn’t been previously reported.
Types of Absences and Consequences; Perfect Attendance & Bingo Incentives
Types of Absences and Consequences
There are 3 types of absences:
- Excused and exempt. This includes health care professional appointments, court appearances, DFPS appointments and religious holidays, provided the proper documentation is turned in, parent notes for student illness. The absence is excused and exempt from counting against the student for truancy and the number of absences to be exempt from a course final, where applicable.
- Excused but un-exempt. This includes parent notes for any reason other than illness; such as vacation, funerals, car troubles, etc. The absence is excused but could have truancy implications for the student.
- Unexcused and un-exempt. This includes any absence for which no documentation is turned in. It will count against the student for truancy.
It is always best to provide communication to the school regarding your student’s absences.
If a student has an excessive number of absences, parents can be filed on for truancy court. Excessive is defined as 3 or more in a 4 week period, 10 or more in a 6 month period, or 18 or more in a school year. Warning letters are sent to the parent / guardian during the process before filing in court. In all cases, Rowe Lane Elementary School will apply discretion and attempt to work with any unusual family circumstances. Any concerns regarding your student’s absences should be discussed with a campus administrator.
A student will receive recognition for perfect attendance for the 9 weeks if they have no absences and less than 3 tardy / early outs in that 9 week grading period.
A student who is at school all day every day of the 9 weeks (no absences, no late arrivals (tardy), no early pick-ups) get to play BINGO on a Friday afternoon with classmates and has a chance to earn prizes.
Homework Requests, Pre-Arranged Absences, Tardies and Early Outs
If your student is absent and you would like to request homework, please contact your student’s teachers by email. The earlier in the day is better to allow time to pull any work together for your student. If there is anything that your student can do at home, the teacher will either email you back an attachment or bring it up to the front office. Please call the front office between 2:00 and 2:15 to see if there is anything for your student.
We realize that things come up and there are situations that call for a student to be out for things other than illness but it is best to keep this at a minimum. If you know your student will be out, please fill out a pre-arranged absence form about a week prior to the absence. Your student can pick this form up from the front office. After the parent / guardian fills out the top portion of the form, the form will be turned in for approval. Once this is approved, the absence will be coded as a parent note but will still count against the student’s attendance record.
Tardies / Early Outs
When a student enters class after the teacher has begun instruction or before the day is complete, he / she misses out on valuable instruction. Therefore, if your student comes in the school building between 7:35 and 9:30 am, he / she will be considered tardy upon arrival. In addition, if your student is signed out after 9:30 am, he / she will be considered signed out early. A combination of 3 or more tardies / early outs within each 9-week period will result in a student not being recognized for perfect attendance at the award ceremony even though no absences have occurred.