• Attendance

    What Happens if a Student is Absent or Late?

    Attendance is taken every period at MCMS. It is crucial that you call the attendance  line whenever your student will be late or absent - 818.597.4261.  Upon arrival, your student will come to the Student Window to check in.  

    Early Pick Up:

    Some appointments cannot be avoided so students  need to leave early. Please send your student in with a note on the day that they need to leave with the time and reason. Students will get an off campus pass from the student window and then be  signed out in the office at the scheduled time. 

    Absences and California Law:

    As we all know, being in school regularly is key to school success and establishing good habits to navigate through the challenges that come with secondary school. By the middle school years, it is increasingly difficult to keep up with school as absences accrue. Here is some pertinent information regarding important laws  governing attendance, as well as what schools are required to do: 

    • California compulsory education laws require schools to report truancies. A truancy, as defined by the law, is a student who has missed three school days or is tardy or absent more than 30 minutes during the school day on three  occasions in one school year without a valid excuse.  

    • Valid excuses (EXCUSED ABSENCE) are: illness/injury, quarantine under direction of health officer, medical/dental appointment that can only be scheduled during school hours, and funeral services for a member of the immediate family. Please note that, even with an illness excuse, the school will require a note from a medical practitioner if the number of illness days exceeds three consecutive or ten in a school year. Of course, we understand that illnesses occur and appreciate you contacting the office and keeping children home when a fever, vomiting, or contagious virus/infection occurs. 

    • UNEXCUSED ABSENCES include: oversleeping, non-medical appointments, personal reasons (family vacations or appointments), cutting school/truancy. 

    • Religious Holidays: An excused absence for religious holiday will be granted upon prior written request of parent or guardian. Please contact the school in advance of these holidays. 

    • Trips and family vacations are not valid excuses under the law. These absences must be reported as truancies. However, there is a provision made for this if your family will be away for five or more school days: with advanced notice, an Independent Study contract may be requested. In this case, the absence can be excused if assigned class work is completed during the absence and turned in upon return to school. Independent Study Contracts (timelines and requirements) can be obtained through the MCMS Office. While Independent Study Contracts are available, we encourage families to schedule vacations during non-school days because of the student stresses and academic disruptions that often accompany these absences. 

    • If a student is tardy 15 minutes or more to class, this is considered an absence, and will be marked as such. • Attendance/Truancy letters are automatically generated and mailed home once a student misses three or more school days without having reported a valid excuse as defined under the law, OR, because of mounting and excessive absences, even with a valid excuse. 

    • Chronically Absent refers to a student who misses 10% or more of school, even with a valid excuse. 

    • Once a student is designated a truant, state law requires schools, districts, counties, and courts to intervene to ensure that parents and pupils receive certain services to assist them in complying with attendance laws. This can include  meetings with the school site administrator, OPUSD SART (School Attendance Review Team) meeting or SARB (School Attendance Review Board) meeting, which includes a  member of the District Attorney’s Office. 

    • Students with UNEXCUSED absences: may not be permissting to make-up missed schoolwork. 

    We refer to Stay At Home Sick for the following: 

    • A morning temperature of 99.0 degrees or greater 

    • Fever-free for 24 hours before returning to school 

    • Vomit-free for 24 hours before returning to school 

    • When you have diarrhea 

    • Severe coughing, green nasal discharge or severe earaches 

    • Severe sore throat with trouble swallowing.