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Importance of School Attendance

Encouraging regular school attendance is one of the most powerful ways you can prepare your child for success—both in school and in life. Our Sleepy Hollow teachers work diligently to plan lessons for each school day that teach students important concepts and skills. When students miss all or part of a school day, they miss important opportunities to learn.

You can prepare your children for a lifetime of success by making regular school attendance a priority. Here are some other ways you can help:

  • Plan vacations during non-school days.
  • When possible, schedule your child’s medical and dental appointments outside of school hours.
  • Make sure your child goes to school every day unless he/she is ill or observing a major religious holiday. 

Thank you for your support of our efforts to maximize student learning through regular school attendance. Our goal is to work in partnership with you - parents and guardians - to provide our students with every opportunity to participate fully in school.

Tardy & Late Arrival

Students are expected to go to their classrooms and be ready to work at the bell each day. Promptness to class is extremely important, excessive tardiness is viewed as a serious attendance matter. 

  • Tardy = Arrival less than 30 minutes late to school
  • Late = More than 30 minutes late to school

Parents must come to the office with their students who are tardy or late for school and check-in to the Check-in Kiosk. The student will receive a tardy/late slip prior to going to the classroom. 

Leaving School During the Day 

A note is to be sent or e-mailed to the teacher when it is necessary for your child to be excused for any reason during the school day. Parents must come to the office to pick up and sign out their children. The office will call the classroom to have your child come up to meet you. If your child(ren) is returning back to school on the same day, upon return the parent must come into the office and sign their children back into the school at the Check-in Kiosk. 

Please be sure that your child understands that legally he/she may not leave the school grounds during their school day without specific permission from the office. There is a "10 minute only" pick-up/drop-off parking space for your convenience in front of the office.


State law funds districts based on the daily attendance of students. This makes attendance at school important for the consistency of the educational experience of our children as well as for funding purposes. Parent contact is always required for all student absences for whatever reason. 

If your child shows symptoms of illness, please do not send him/her to school. Your child should be fever-free without medication for 24 hours before returning to school. For ALL absences the school must have a parent contact. Please call the school Attendance Line (925-258-6448) to notify the school that your child will be out of school that day. Prolonged illness or communicable diseases should be reported to the school office as soon as possible.

Process for Reporting an Absence

When your child must be absent, please call the Sleepy Hollow School 24-hour attendance line at (925) 258-6448. Please leave your child’s name, the reason for absence, date(s) of absence, grade level, and teacher. Also, leave your first and last name and relationship to the student. 

Excused Absences

Students who are sick should stay home. Students with a temperature over 100° F or who have experienced flu-like symptoms need to be free of symptoms for 24 hours before returning to school. California Education Code section 48205 determines which absences can be considered excused; all other absences are unexcused.

Applicable excused absences for students in grades TK-8 are as follows:

  • Illness
  • Quarantine under county health officer
  • Medical, dental, or vision appointments
  • Funeral for an immediate family member* (1 day in CA; 3 days out of state)
  • Appearance in court
  • Religious holiday or retreat (retreat limited to 4 hrs./semester)
  • Spending time with uniformed immediate family member in active duty (deployed to combat zone)
  • Attending a naturalization ceremony

*Mother, Father, Grandmother, Grandfather, Brother, Sister, and any other relative living in the household.

Unexcused Absences and Truancy

All absences not listed above are considered unexcused by the California Department of Education. This includes family vacations during school and other absences that parents may feel are reasonable or even necessary due to family circumstances. California law (Education Code section 48260) classifies a student as truant when the student has missed school on three (3) occasions involving any combination of the following:

  • An unexcused absence from school for a full day or more than 30 minutes
  • Being more than 30 minutes late to school without a valid excuse

Chronic Absenteeism is defined by the California Education Code Section 48263.6 as being absent from school without a valid excuse (unexcused absence) for 10% or more of the school days in one school year. Students in OUSD attend school for 180 days, so 10% is equivalent to 18 days. This year, chronic absenteeism will be one of the indicators used to assess schools and school districts on the California School Dashboard ( The Dashboard provides information that schools can use to improve their performance.

Mandatory Parent/Guardian Notifications About Truancy

California Education Code Section 48260.5 mandates that schools notify parents/guardians when a student’s unexcused absences meet or exceed the following benchmarks:

  • First Notification: Any combination of three (3) unexcused absences or excessive tardies/late (30 or more minutes) in one school year.
  • Second Notification: Any combination of six (6) unexcused absences or excessive tardies/late (30 or more minutes) in one school year.
  • Third Notification: Any additional unexcused absences or excessive tardies/late (30 or more minutes) in one school year.

Independent Study Program 

For students who will be absent between five and ten consecutive days of school, the office must be informed at least five workdays in advance. An Independent Study Contract can be requested, and is subject to approval by the Principal, to provide a continuing education program for your child and avoid a financial loss for the school. The contract must be signed and completed work returned to school the first school day after the contract ends for the student to receive credit.

Prior Approval Absense Request