Regular school attendance is essential for continuity and academic progress. As the SPS Parent Handbook indicates, absences due to student illness, religious observance, legal proceedings, and family emergencies are authorized absences. Absences for other reasons should be avoided. Parents who take their children out of school for vacation assume responsibility for their children’s educational program. Teachers cannot be expected to provide work in place of missed instruction.
Whenever a student anticipates absence or tardiness, a parent/guardian should notify the school attendance phone line (978-443-1085 X 1) prior to 9:00 a.m. with the student’s name, parent’s name, grade level, teacher’s name, and reason for absence/ tardiness. Without this information or previous notice, the school staff will call a parent to confirm a child’s absence. In the event a parent confirmation is unavailable, the emergency numbers previously provided by the parent will be contacted. If no emergency contact can be reached to verify a child’s absence, the Sudbury police department will assist in locating the missing child. This measure is a necessary precaution to ensure the safety and welfare of each student at Peter Noyes School. When a child returns to school following an absence or tardiness, a note from home explaining the circumstances, signed and dated by the parent is recommended.
Each student absence or tardy will be coded as excused or unexcused.
An excused absence includes:
- Documented illness or injury
- Bereavement/family funeral
- Major religious observances
- Extraordinary family circumstances
An unexcused absence includes, but is not limited to:
- Chronic absences or tardies without medical documentation
- Non-emergency family situations
- Family vacations
- Attendance letters will be sent home for students that have more than 5 unexcused absences and meetings will be requested for students that have 10+ absences from school. Our hope is to work together with families to ensure that all of our students are in school regularly.
In Massachusetts, Chronic absenteeism is defined as the percentage of students missing 10 percent or more of their days in membership. In a typical 180-day school year, this is the percentage of students who miss 18 or more days. The chronic absenteeism rate includes both excused and unexcused absences and is calculated for students in grades 1 through 12.