Attendance Tips for Parents


Dear Parent,

The community of San Marcos School District recognizes the positive impact that regular student attendance has on student achievement and we remain committed in our efforts to promote student achievement.

A recent law changed the way schools receive state funding. It is important that you understand this law and support our efforts to increase attendance so that our schools will not loose a large amount of annual funding.

Schools no longer receive money for excused absences. Schools now only receive funding for students who are actually in class. Every day a student misses school, even for excused absences, the school loses about $45.00 in income, the equivalent of about 2 library books. We ask that you support our efforts to increase student attendance by:

  • Planning your family vacations during the summer or school holidays.
  • Try to schedule doctor appointments for your child after school hours, or on late start or early release days.
  • When your child has a doctor's appointment in the middle of the school day, bring him/her to school before or after the appointment.
  • Allow your child to stay home only when he/she has a contagious illness or is too sick to be comfortable at school.

Remember, too, that good student attendance not only benefits our school, but it also benefits your child. Every day a student misses school, he gets more than two days behind his peers because he must make up missed learning and catch up with new leaning at the same time. Every day a student is in school, he/she raises his/her chance to score well on tests. Attendance is very important toward achieving academic success and we need the support of all our parents.

We know that you want the very best for your child, and we do too. Please contact your school's principal if you have any questions about this information or need assistance with your child's school attendance.


  • Let your child know that you think school is important.
  • Make sure your child goes to school regularly and on time. Don't make them late.
  • Take an interest in your child's school work. If they are absent, make sure they do all make-up work immediately after returning to school.
  • Provide regular times and a quiet, clean area for doing homework
  • Set a regular bedtime schedule. Age should not be a factor.
  • Provide your child with plenty of time to get ready for school. Wake him/her up if necessary.
  • If your child starts to miss school, speak to the school and let your child know that he/she may receive a failing grade if absences become excessive (10 or more).
  • Students who are truant from school may be required to make up the time during non school time such as on Saturday.
  • Consult the school nurse or your doctor if illness becomes frequent or severe.
  • Communication with the school is important. The school is required by law to send you a letter when your child has excessive absences.
  • If your child is absent, contact the school's attendance office within 48 hours and explain the reason for the absence. By state law, absences can only be excused for illness, medical/dental appointment, funeral or a justifiable personal reason approved by the principal.
  • Don't expect your older children to stay home and act as babysitters for younger children.
  • Set good examples and enforce rules.
  • Include regular exercise and a balanced diet in your child's daily activities.
  • Post the school calendar and notes on the refrigerator, or another prominent location.
  • Limit and balance extracurricular activities.
  • Keep open communication lines with your child.

According to state law,

  • You and your child can be referred to a School Attendance Review Board (SARB) hearing if your child has excessive or unexcused absences. The SARB can require a Doctor's note for all future absences due to illness.