A commitment to school attendance is an essential component of a quality learning experience and regular attendance and engagement are required in order to demonstrate mastery of material and receive credit for a course. 


Excused Absences:

  • Death in the immediate family 
  • Court summons 
  • Certified Illness of the child
  • Hazardous weather conditions
  • State emergency 
  • Suspension 
  • Observance of religious holiday
  • Work or activity accepted by school authorities (written approval required in advance) such as: 
    • College visits
    • Field trips 
    • Doctors appointments
    • Extracurricular activities

Absentee Notes: 

All parental, medical, or “age of majority” notes must include: 

  • Student’s first and last name
  • Student’s ID number 
  • Grade level
  • Date of full-day absence, tary, or early dismissal 
  • Reason for absence, tardy or early dismissal 


What to do in case you…


Are absent: 

Within three (3) days of returning to school, you must submit a note and present it to the attendance secretary with your student ID number, grade, and a parent/guardian’s daytime phone number. Only notes will excuse your absence. Notes presented after three (3) days will not be accepted. If you do not have a note it will count as an unexcused absence. If you are out longer than four (4) days you must have a doctor’s note along with the parent/guardian note. A digital copy of an absence note can be submitted by email.


Arrive late to school: 

Students who arrive late to school should report to the Attendance Office and sign in before going to class. You will be given an admit slip. If no notice from a parent/guardian is presented, the tardy is unexcused. 


Have an early dismissal: 

Go to the Attendance Office before first period to turn in your request for an early dismissal note from your parent or guardian and get an early dismissal pass. You must sign out when you leave or your absence will be unexcused. You also need to sign in when you return.  


Become ill and leave early: 

The nurse will give you a dismissal pass. You must sign out at the attendance office and will need to bring a note from your parents when you return to school.


Are observing a religious holiday: 

MCPS understands that students may miss school for a variety of reasons including the observance of religious holidays. These are excused absences, and students will be allowed to make up missed assignments. If students miss school, they should bring a note from a parent/guardian providing a written explanation, within three school days of returning to school.


Are visiting a college: 

Three (3) days before a college visit you must have your parent/guardian write you a note and have it approved by the attendance secretary and administrators. Only 11th and 12th grade students are excused for college visits. 


Are temporarily suspended: 

The student and parent/guardian must meet with the student’s grade level administrator upon returning to school.