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Frustrated over absences



My school just sent out letters to the parents of students who have had more than 9 absences (for any reason) this year. It is a pretty stern letter, but still, you would not believe parents' responses. I have had two nasty notes so far, and the letter did not even come from me! I am required to sign it, though, so they see my name on it along with our principal's name. Anyway, one parent demanded to know why her son had four unexcused absences. My answer was he was absent four times without a note being sent in. Her response was that she was SURE that she sent a note each time saying he was sick (nope, she didn't - I keep a file of these notes), and he just must have forgotten to give them to me. Now here's the kicker - ALL of his absences when he was supposedly sick are on Fridays. Does that seem like a little bit of a coincidence??? On the advice of our guidance counselor, I went ahead and changed his unexcused absences to excused because it wasn't worth arguing over. I just don't understand why parents choose to keep their kids out of school, neglect to write notes excusing them, and then it's MY fault? I don't think so!


Senior Member
Just one more reason why so many kids cannot take responsibility for their actions.


parent calls

We have no excused vs unexcused absences. A note is required for all absences.
To stem the problem of 'I sent the note but he did not give it to you', we allow students two days to bring in the note. On the second day if they do not have a note we list their name and absent dates on a form, the form is sent to the secretary, and either she or the principal calls the parent to request a note. If the parent says that they gave the note to the child the office puts the parent on hold, calls our room and asks the child to find the note and bring it to the office. If the child cannot produce a note the parent is asked to send another one.

Mr. C

Full Member
UNX vs. EXC absences

At our school, the only absences excused are when a person provides a doctor's note. A parent's note won't work, for the very reason that some parents will allow their child to play hooky and then sign a little note 'excusing' them.

Of course, there are other reasons, like funerals and school activities. But for illness, a doctor's note is required on file in order for it to be considered excused.

c green

That seems extreme

A doctor's note? How many people take their kid to a doctor just because he or she has a bad cold? I got the flu every winter when I was a kid. We didn't go to the doctor for that. I got a wastebasket next to my bed, lots of broth, and orange juice with 7-Up. Worked fine.

Mr. C

Full Member
Yes, but bad colds won't cause a student to stay home more than 10 days.

The only consequences, besides being way behind in schoolwork, come after 10 days. Now, I do agree that there are times when going to the doctor is not necessary, and that is why there are no real consequences until after that 10th unexcused absence.


going through the same thing

I am going through the same thing. I have a child who has been absent 19 days so far this year. She is usually out two days at a time and almost always Monday and Tuesday or Thursday and Friday. She is failing almost everything and mom doesn't seem to care. She receives services on Fridays and has missed the past four weeks because she is absent every Friday. Mom worries about idiotic things like the fact that the kid missed the Christmas party because SURPRISE! her daughter missed the day before vacation because they went away.



Kindergarten isn't manitory YET in our state. Therefore attendance isn't something the district can get after the parents for in Kindergarten.

I have a kindergarten who has an older sibling (this kid's absenses -the district can get after - since he's school aged).

This kindergartener like his older sibling is absent frequently. Of the 16 absenses he had last quarter, 10 of them were 1/2 day absenses where he didn't come until 10:00 - 10:30. Reason: Mother told the school when she was called by the school about them NOT being in school for the day - that she forgot to set the alarm/didn't hear it/ she actually said once, "I was too tired to get up and get the kids up. So I went back to sleep. And the bus had already stopped and gone on. . . and I don't have a car to get them to school."

The district sends an employee 10 miles to pick up the kids and bring them to school. At 10:30 - this kindergarten kid misses his reading group and the intervention group that I worked to get him in - since academically he was sooooooooooo low. 26 days of NO reading groups in a 45 day quarter! He has had only 19 reading groups for the whole quarter! Wow! It's understandable that he is not showing much growth!

The district has sent several warning letters about attendance to this family on behalf of the older boy. When I was told that another employee at the school was picking them up and bringing them to school, I had a puzzled face - I was told that it was the school district responsibility to go after truant students and bring them to school? ? ? To me, it seems to inable the mother not to be responsible. After a while, the court might "threaten" to put her in jail for not making sure her kids get to school . . . ??? The ways to manipulate the system!! If I ever became a parent, I am learning all the tricks of the trade to be an irresponsible parent - and get away with it blaming others for my child's weaknesses and faults. I could be the school's nightmare parent!


Senior Member
Humerous Absence

One day I had a message on my voicemail. It was a parent calling her son in sick for the day. It was a beautiful spring day and the family had decided to go on a daytrip. She apparently thought she had hung up the phone (but had not), so I was privy to the rest of their conversation. They were at the fireman training facility just outside of town and were watching as the firemen conducted training lessons/drills. They then discussed where they were going to go for lunch! I listened for about 5 minutes before erasing the message. I really did not mind that they were playing hookie, I just found it very funny that they missed hanging up the phone. I never called them on it, but often wonder if they ever discovered that they had not hung up the cell phone. If not that day, I bet they did when they got the bill.:D