IX. ATTENDANCE AND ABSENCES

Daily Schedule
 7:00 AM Extended Daycare Program opens
 7:45  Yard Supervision begins
 7:55  Warning bell rings – students line up at classroom and doors open
 8:00  Tardy/beginning bell, school day begins, opening exercises
 8:10  Junior high (grades 6-8) first class begins
 9:25 Kindergarten recess begins
 9:55  Kindergarten recess ends
 10:00 Grades 1-5 recess begins
 10:15  Grades 1-5 recess ends
 10:25 Grades 6-8 recess begins
 10:35 Grades 6-8 recess ends
 11:25  Grades K-2 lunch begins
 11:40 Grades 3-5 lunch begins
 12:00 PM Grades K-2 lunch ends
 12:05 Grades 6-8 lunch begins
 12:15  Grades 3-5 lunch ends
 12:40 Grades 6-8 lunch ends
 1:30 Grades 1-5 recess begins
 1:40 Grades K-5 recess ends
 2:45 Dismissal (K-8)
 3:00 Yard Supervision ends
 6:00 Extended Daycare Program closes


Early Dismissals

Half Day: 12:00 PM Dismissal
  • First and last day of school
  • Day before: Thanksgiving, Christmas vacation, Easter break
  • Last two days of school
  • Friday of Catholic Schools Week
  • First trimester Conference Week

Minimum Day: 1:30 PM Dismissal

Faculty meetings are usually held twice a month on the second and fourth Mondays. These are announced in the school calendar and the weekly Principal’s Bulletin. Any other early dismissal days besides these will be announced in advance.



Regular Attendance

School success begins with regular, punctual attendance. Students must attend school regularly with as few absences as possible to benefit fully from his/her education. Therefore, parents are asked to:
  • Make all medical and dental appointments outside of the school day whenever possible.
  • Guard academic time by avoiding disruption of the daily schedule with early pick-ups or late arrivals.
  • Schedule family vacation time to coincide with school breaks or outside the school calendar.
When a child is absent, the parent is asked to call the school or send a note with a sibling. The school may call home if the student is not present when attendance is taken. If a parent or guardian has not made contact with the school concerning their child’s absence by the time the student is ready to return, a written excuse, dated and signed by the parent/guardian, is required on the day of a student’s return.



Valid Excuses for Absences

Students may be absent from school for a valid excuse. At Our Lady of Fatima Catholic School the following constitutes a valid excuse:

1. Medical or dental appointments which cannot be scheduled outside the school day.

2. Illness that physically prevents a student from meeting the demands of the academic day.
  • Student should return with a note from the doctor’s office verifying the appointment and check into the school office for an admit slip.
  • Students who need to be excused during the day for dental or medical appointments are to bring a note that morning to the school office. The student will be sent to the office to meet his/her parent(s). At no time is a parent allowed to take a child from the classroom or playground.
  • Student shall be permitted to make-up missed school assignments. The student is responsible for requesting missed work from the teacher(s).
  • Upon return the student should bring a signed note from his/her parent/guardian stating the nature of the illness, etc.
  • If the illness causes an absence of more than three consecutive days, the student must return with a doctor’s release before being readmitted to class.
  • When children are sick it is important for their personal welfare that they have enough time to recover fully before returning to school. It is also critical that the teachers and students in a class not be at risk from students who have returned to school too soon and are still contagious to others. For the health and safety of all:
    • If a student is sent home for illness, with or without a fever, he/she may NOT return to school for at least 24 hours, e.g. If a child is sent home at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, the soonest he/she could return would be 11:00 on Wednesday.
    • When a student is sent home ill, he/she may not be brought back to school that day for an after school activity, e.g. Scouts, sports, prayer service/liturgy, etc.
    • Students who are absent 3 days or more must have a doctor’s note indicating that the student is not contagious and able to return to school.
3. Funerals of family or friends
  • Student should return with a note from parent to present to his/her homeroom teacher. 
4. Family Necessity which is an extreme emergency or unexpected circumstances which requires the child to be absent.
  • Student should return with note from parent to present to his/her homeroom teacher.


Tardies

When tardy, parents must accompany their child(ren) to the school office with a parent for an Admittance Slip BEFORE proceeding to class. To continue attendance at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic School, the student must maintain regular attendance and avoid tardiness. A student is tardy if he/she arrives after the 8:00 AM bell has rung in the morning. Habitual tardiness is most disruptive to students and teachers already in class and deprives the tardy student of the instruction in process.

Consequences for tardies is as follows:

The accumulation of four tardies in a trimester is excessive. Parents will be contacted by the principal and assigned one additional hour of service (to the school or parish).
A sixth tardy in a trimester places the family on probation, as well as one additional hour of service (to the school or parish).
An eighth tardy requires parents to meet with the principal to discuss continued attendance at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic School, as well as one additional hour of service (to the school or parish).



Truancy/Excessive Absences

A student is truant who is absent from school without a valid excuse more than three days in one school year.  In order to continue in attendance at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic School a student is required to maintain regular attendance. Excessive absences may be grounds to deny a student continued attendance and/or cause a negative impact on the student’s learning and grades for the trimester. Under ordinary circumstances, more than six days of absence in a trimester is considered excessive. Excessive absences will require administrative investigation for the cause of the absences and may affect the children’s continued attendance at the school. 

Parents need to remember that all children are subject to the law of compulsory, full-time education. So no absence should be taken lightly. Repeated truancies will be reported to the appropriate public agencies. An administrative review will be initiated for any student who is truant and appropriate action will be taken.



Family Vacations During School

Parents are strongly encouraged to have their children attend school regularly and to avoid recreational vacations during school time. If occasion should arise which requires a student’s non-illness absence from school, advance notification is required.

Students need to be in school daily. As partners with parents, we are compelled as a professional community to guard the instructional time of our students.

Non-illness absence, such as a death in the family, serious illness of relatives, or a family catastrophe are understandably necessary.

For all non-medical absences, such as family vacations, extended weekends, etc., teachers will not prepare work assignments for students to take on the trip. Work will be assigned for the student when he/she has returned to school and parents and students request that work be given.

The school MAY NOT recommend in favor of the absence if it is felt that the absence will affect the student’s academic progress in a negative manner. If the parents decide to absent their child(ren) anyway, make-up work will still be given upon return to school, but the school assumes no responsibility for the learning time lost to the student or tests that might be missed during the absence. The absence may also have an adverse effect on the student’s academic grades for the quarter.