Attendance Procedures

Procedures for student absences, tardies, early-checkout, and more.

School begins promptly at 8:50 a.m. and ends at 2:45 p.m. Doors will open at 7:15am (NEW for 2019). Students are expected to attend every class or activity for which they are scheduled each school day. Specifically, this means that students must attend all classes, including Bruin Block; report to the cafeteria during lunch; go to the designated area of the school for assemblies, pep rallies, and other special events; and be punctual. FCPS requires that a call or note be received within 72 hours of an absence from a parent or guardian. No notification will result in an unexcused absence.

What to do when a student is or will be absent from school: 

  • Call the student’s subschool attendance line on the morning of the absence. Provide student name, caller’s name, relationship to student, date and reason for absence. If student will be absent for more than one day, a call must be made each day. Students are responsible for ensuring that contact is made with the subschool office and checking FCPS 24/7 ( for assignments missed.

Middle School Students

High School Students 

What Information is Needed:

  • It is important for parents to give the student's name and grade level, the date, and the reason for the absence. The county lists the following as excused absences:
  1. Illness of the student
  2. Death in the family
  3. Doctor's or dentist's appointment
  4. Observance of a religious holiday
  5. Approved prearranged absences
  6. Other reasons acceptable to the principal.

Prearranged Absence:

  • In order to be excused for any reason other than those listed under attendance, a parent/guardian must send a note to the subschool attendance secretary at least two days in advance stating the reason and dates of the proposed absence. The student will be given a form which is to be signed by each of the teachers and the subschool principal prior to the absence. An excused absence or a prearranged absence permits students to make up missed assignments. Assignments not made up will affect the grade.

Students must assume complete responsibility for making up any assignments missed.

Attendance and Academy (Chantilly, Edison, Fairfax, Falls Church, Marshall, and West Potomac Academies)

  • The parent must notify both LBSS and the academy school for absences.

Attendance and Athletics

  • Student athletes must attend all scheduled classes in order to participate in any athletic contest, practice, or activity. Reasonable exceptions, such as a medical appointment, may be approved by the Principal or Director of Student Activities prior to participation.

Attendance Appeals and Records

  • Appeals of unexcused and unverified absences must be made during the quarter in which the absence occurred and will not be reviewed during the last week  of the  quarter. Extenuating circumstances  may permit  a  one‐time  exception to  the  48 hour notification. Appeals are made to the student’s subschool assistant principal. The subschool office will keep a record of each student’s checkouts and notes. The subschool office staff may ask that appointments be confirmed in writing on office stationary by the professional visited.

Unexcused Absences

  • An unexcused absence from school or from class is one for which the student does not have a legitimate reason in the opinion of the principal or assistant principal. When a student is absent without prior communication between the parent and the school, school personnel will notify the parent and take appropriate action based on the individual circumstances. After two unexcused absences, a conference may be requested with the parent. School attendance is required by law, as outlined in the Code of Virginia. Absences and tardies will be addressed by individual interventions with progressive consequences for students. Students are fully responsible for completing any missed assignments. Teachers may assist the student and parent in identifying missed work, but are not obligated to provide make‐up assignments.

Chronic Absences

  • Whenever any student accumulates a total of five unexcused days of absence in a school year, the school will refer the student to the attendance officer, and a plan to resolve the non‐attendance will be developed. If an additional unexcused absence occurs in the same school year, a conference will be scheduled. If a further unexcused absence occurs in the school year, the attendance officer will file a complaint with the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court as described in Section 22.1‐258 of the Code of Virginia. The current version of Regulation 2234 provides additional details.

Make-up Work Due to Absence

It is extremely important that students make up any and all class work or homework missed due to absence. Students whose absences are unexcused should complete all missed assignments, although credit will not be given on the assignments.

  • All students should check their teacher’s FCPS 24/7 ( sites or Google Classrooms for assignments.
  • Students who are absent one day will take previously announced quizzes and tests and hand in previously assigned work when they return to class.  Assignments given during their absence should be made up upon returning to school.
  • In the case of pre‐arranged absences, students will deliver to teachers all previously assigned work due during their absence the day they return to class.
  • Students who are absent for multiple days are afforded one day of makeup for each day missed. The student is responsible for conferring with the teacher to arrange a make‐up schedule. Again, work previously assigned is due the day of the student's return. (If long‐term assignments carry a deadline, as opposed to a due date, students are expected to send the assignment to school if they are absent.)
  • A student who is absent from class (e.g. for a field trip, medical appointment, excused tardy, or clinic visit) but who is in attendance for any part of the day, is required to hand in assigned work and make up quizzes/tests on that day.
  • Under extenuating circumstances, at the discretion of the teacher, an extension may be granted for any of these different conditions. Students are responsible for discussing these extenuating circumstances with the teacher.

Notification of Absences

  • Automated attendance calls are made twice each school day. If a student is reported as “not in attendance” to their first class of the day and a phone call has not been received by the school concerning the student not being in school, then the parent will receive an automated phone call that morning. If a student is reported as “absent” for the school day and no call concerning the student’s attendance has been received, then the parent will receive an automated phone call and/or email concerning the absence in the evening of the missed day. Please contact the student’s subschool if you believe the call was made in error. All unverified absences will be mark as unexcused if a phone call is not received within 48 hours.

What to do when a student arrives late to school

  • All students arriving to school after 8:00 AM are considered unexcused unless they are on a late arriving school bus or have a note excusing tardiness. Students arriving late to school must enter the school at the main entrance and check in at the security desk. The student will be given a tardy pass from the security kiosk between 8:00-9:30 AM. If the student arrives to school after 9:30 AM, they must report directly to their subschool office. A note or phone call from a parent is required for an excused/unexcused (determined by reason) pass to class. Student must make contact with all teachers for any class missed.

Tardy to Class

  • Students are to be in their seats when the bell rings to begin the class period. Tardiness may result in a detention with the teacher. Habitual tardiness will be considered insubordination and/or defiance and will result in other disciplinary action. Parents will be notified by phone when a student appears on the period tardy list.

What to do when a student needs to leave school early

  • Prior to 8:00 a.m., the student must present a note from the parent to their subschool office.  Notes must include time of dismissal, reason for leaving, and a contact number.  Parents of middle school students must also include the name of the person picking them up.  Please note that this person must be listed as an emergency contact.  At the time of early check-out, middle school parents must come in Entrance 1 and meet their student at the security desk (NEW for 2019).  Anyone picking up a student must bring a photo ID with them. High school parents may pick up students outside Entrance 1. 
  • Notes are strongly preferred for early check-out, but if the parent was unable to send a note with the student, the parent should call the subschool office as early as possible.   All calls will be confirmed by callback to a phone number on the emergency care card.  Regrettably, if the parent did not send a note with the student, the parent will be required to park, come into the school to furnish a note, and pick up the student.  Without the advance notice provided by a note, there may be a wait until our staff is able to locate the student, particularly if the student is at lunch or in a physical education class.  We further regret that without advance notice we are unable to accommodate requests for early dismissal during the last half-hour of the school day.
  • In either case, students must check out at the subschool office when leaving school and must check back in at the subschool office upon their return.  Students who leave school without checking out properly will be marked unexcused and may face disciplinary action (if returning to school, students are also subject to search).  Students must contact all teachers of any class to be missed.