Public school districts in California receive their funding from the state of California based on the actual number of students who are present for classes, not on the District’s enrollment. Districts are not paid for students who are absent, regardless of the reason. Fountain Valley urges parents to make sure their children attend school regularly and to schedule medical and other appointments so that a student misses none, or only a small portion, of the school day. The District also asks that vacations be avoided during the time school is in session. The better a student’s attendance, the more a student will learn.
The school calendar is designed to minimize problems for families who plan vacations around traditional holiday periods and thereby minimize student absences.
Following an absence of any kind, please notify the office when your student will be absent. Children should not be sent to school when they are not feeling well. Absences without a written excuse or phone call from home are recorded as unexcused. (Please see the section on Truancies.)
In general, children are asked not to arrive more than 15 minutes before the start of the school day unless there are meetings or activities scheduled for them. Students must be picked up on time, schools do not have the personnel to provide supervision outside of specified arrival and dismissal times.
Leaving School During the Day
No child is permitted to leave school during the school day without permission from the school office. If parents are taking their child out of school early, they must go to the school office to have the child released. The office must be notified in advance if someone other than a parent is to pick up the child, this person must be listed as having permission.
Children are expected to be at school on time. If a child is late, they must check into the front office before going to class. If the tardy is excused please provide the office with a doctor/dental note. Frequent tardiness without a valid excuse is considered truancy under state law. (Please see the section below on Truancies.)
A student is considered truant if tardy three times for more than 30 minutes each time, or if the student misses a day of school and is considered an unexcused absence. Excessive truancies may result in the student being referred to the School Attendance Review Board (SARB).
Unexcused absences are all absences that do not meet the following criteria listed in the California Education Code. The criteria which allow for excused absences are:
- An illness, medical or dental need (a doctor’s note may be required)
- The funeral of an immediate family member
- A justifiable personal reason when the student’s excused absence has been requested in writing in advance and has been approved by the principal.