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Attendance

Regular attendance is critical to the learning process.  Research shows that frequent absences seriously affect learning.  We encourage you to schedule all doctor and dental appointments during non-school hours.

Absence Reporting:

Please report your student’s absence via phone (Main Office: 425-837-4100) or email diattendance@issaquah.wednet.edu with the following information:

  • Student Name
  • Teacher
  • Date(s) of absence
  • Reason for absence

Informing the teacher is helpful for the teacher, but only the office can excuse the absence.

Extended Absences:

Email the diattendance@issaquah.wednet.edu with student name, teacher name, and dates of absence.

  • Pre-planned absences of 3-20 school days requires completion of the Elementary Pre-approved Absence Request Form. This form must be completed and returned to the Discovery office one week prior to the first absent day.
  • Absences of 20 or more consecutive school days requires completion of the Request for Absence Greater than 20 Days Form.   This form must be completed and returned to the Discovery office one week prior to the first absent day.

Absences During Testing:

  • Family trips taken during an entire assessment window will be marked as unexcused. Data collected during these assessments informs our practice and supports your student’s learning. Naturally, our preference is for families to travel during vacation periods outlined by the ISD.
  • If your family needs to travel outside of those windows, please be aware of the following, per State law:
    • Five or more unexcused absences in a month require a letter and a petition to be filed with the courts.
    • Ten or more unexcused absences in a year require a letter and a petition to be filed with the courts.

Things to note:

  • Any absence is marked unexcused if the office is not notified.
  • A student arriving two or more hours after the start of the day is considered absent for the morning.
  • A student who leaves two or more hours before dismissal is considered absent for the afternoon.

Excused Absences:

  1. Participation in a District or school approved activity or instructional program;
  2. Illness, health condition or medical appointment (including, but not limited to, medical, counseling, dental or optometry); 
  3. Family emergency, including, but not limited to, a death or illness in the family;
  4. Religious or cultural purpose including observance of a religious or cultural holiday or participation in religious or cultural instruction;
  5. Court, judicial proceeding or serving on a jury;
  6. Post-secondary, technical school or apprenticeship program visitation, or scholarship interview;
  7. State-recognized search and rescue activities consistent with RCW 28A.225.055;
  8. Absence directly related to the student’s homeless status;
  9. Absence resulting from a disciplinary/corrective action. (e.g., short-term or long-term suspension, emergency expulsion); and
  10. Principal (or designee) and parent, guardian, or emancipated youth mutually agreed upon approved activity.

The principal or designee may only grant permission for a student’s absence providing such absence does not adversely affect the student’s educational process.  

Required Conference for Elementary School Students:

If an elementary school student has five or more excused absences in a single month during the current school year or ten or more excused absences in the current school year, the district will schedule a conference with the student and their parent(s) at a reasonably convenient time.  

The conference is intended to identify barriers to the student’s regular attendance and to identify supports and resources so the student may regularly attend school.  A conference is not required if (1) a pre-arranged absence form has been submitted or (2) if a doctor’s note has been provided and a plan is in place to ensure the student will not fall behind in their coursework.

A conference with the parent or guardian will be scheduled after two unexcused absences within any month during the current school year. Prior to suspension or expulsion, the parent will be notified in writing in his/her primary language that the student has unexcused absences. A conference will be scheduled to determine what corrective measures should be taken to ameliorate the cause for the student's absences from school. If the parent does not attend the conference, the parent will be notified of the steps the district has decided to take to reduce the student’s absences.

Not later than the student’s fifth unexcused absence in a month, the district will enter into an agreement with the student and parents that establishes school attendance requirements, refer the student to a community truancy board or file a petition and affidavit with the juvenile court alleging a violation of RCW 28A.225.010