This year, Forks High School is making a special effort to ensure that all students fully benefit from their education by attending school regularly. Attending school regularly helps children feel better about school—and themselves. Your student can start building this habit in preschool so they learn right away that going to school on time, every day is important. Consistent attendance will help children do well in high school, college, and at work.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Starting in kindergarten, too many absences (excused and unexcused) can cause children to fall behind in school.
- Missing 10 percent (or about 18 days) increases the chance that your student will not read or master math at the same level as their peers.
- Students can still fall behind if they miss just a day or two days every few weeks.
- Being late to school may lead to poor attendance.
- Absences can affect the whole classroom if the teacher has to slow down learning to help children catch up.
- By 6th grade, absenteeism is one of three signs that a student may drop out of high school.
- By being present at school, your child learns valuable social skills and has the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with other students and school staff.
- 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 9th grade, regular and high attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than 8th grade test scores.
WHAT WE NEED FROM YOU
We miss your student when they are gone and we value their contributions to our school. We would like you to help ensure that your student attends regularly and is successful in school. If your student is going to be absent, please contact Mrs. Romberg, attendance secretary @ 374-6262 ext: 236. The office is open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Parents may leave a message about student absences at any time. We ask that parents call the school by 9:00 a.m. if your student will be absent. Parents can also email Mrs. Romberg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When your student is absent from school for any period of time, a note of verification from a parent or guardian is required and shall be turned into the attendance office; this note must be dated and contain the following information and be turned in as close to the absence as possible:
- Date of absence
- Reason for absence
- Signature of the parent or guardian
OUR PROMISE TO YOU
We know that there are a wide variety of reasons that students are absent from school, from health concerns to transportation challenges. There are many people in our building prepared to help you if you or your student face challenges in getting to school regularly or on time:
Ms. Shannon Haberzettl, Counselor, ext: 263
Cecilia Reaume, Student Assistant Professional, ext: 257
Native Support, ext: 248
Jessica Mansfield: Readiness to Learn, ext: 256
Melanie Donahue, School Nurse, ext: 450
Jen Daman, Student Discipline, ext: 246.
We promise to track attendance daily, to notice when your student is missing from class, communicate with you to understand why they were absent, and to identify barriers and supports available to overcome challenges you may face in helping your student attend school.
SCHOOL POLICIES AND STATE LAWS
The following is a summary of the actions that will be taken at each step of the truancy process.
Number of Absences
Action taken by the district
1 (one) unexcused absence
The school will place a Connect Ed phone call informing the family of the absence and consequences
2 (two) unexcused absences
The school will request a conference with parent and principal to analyze causes of absenteeism
5 (five) unexcused absences
The school will refer the student and family to Community Truancy Board, if the student and/or family do not participate the district will file a truancy petition with the Juvenile Court in Clallam County as required by RCW 28.A.225.010
7(seven) unexcused absences
within a month or 10 (ten) unexcused
absences within a current school year
The district will file a truancy petition with the Juvenile Court for civil action as provided by RCW 28A.225.035
10 (ten) or more excused, unexcused or a combination of both absences within a semester
The school will require a care provider’s verification of illness whenever the student is absent
At Forks High School, we have established the following rules on attendance that will help you ensure your student is attending regularly. Our QVSD Student and Parent Handbook can be found on our district website, www.qvschools.org under Links.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- Set a regular bed time and morning routine.
- Prepare for school the night before, finishing homework and getting a good night’s sleep.
- Find out what day school starts and make sure your child has the required immunizations.
- Don’t let your student stay home unless they are truly sick. Keep in mind complaints of a stomach ache or headache can be a sign of anxiety and not a reason to stay home.
- Avoid appointments and extended trips when school is in session.
- Develop back-up plans for getting to school if something comes up. Call on a family member, a neighbor, or another parent.
- Keep track of your student’s attendance. Missing more than 9 days could put your student at risk of falling behind.
- Talk to your student about the importance of attendance.
- Talk to your students’ teachers if you notice sudden changes in behavior. These could be tied to something going on at school.
- Encourage meaningful afterschool activities, including sports and clubs.
Cindy M. Feasel