Guidelines for Attendance
The Education Improvement Act of 1984 makes regular school attendance compulsory for all
children, ages 5 to 16, inclusive. A child may be exempt from kindergarten only if the
parent/guardian files the “Form to Elect Non Attendance in Compulsory Kindergarten” with the
school in his/her attendance area.
The law requires that school officials immediately intervene when a student has 3
consecutive unlawful absences or 5 total unlawful absences.
What are Excused Absences?
1) Absences due to illness accompanied by a doctor’s note.
2) Absences due to illness accompanied by a parent’s note. Each student is allowed up to five parent
notes per school year. Parent notes can only be used for sickness of student, sickness of
parent/guardian not allowing transportation of student to school or family emergency.
***Parent notes CAN NOT be used for vacations or day trips out of town. This is a change mandated
by the SC State Department of Education.
3) Absences due to death in immediate family. Must be accompanied by a copy of the obituary to be
considered a bereavement day.
4) Absences due to illness, suspension, or any other reason the child may be sent home by school
What are Unexcused/Unlawful Absences?
1) Absences not accompanied by a doctor’s note.
2) Absences not accompanied by a parent’s note (limit 5 per year).
3) Absences from school without the knowledge of their parents.
Very Important: A truancy conference will be required if there are 3 or more
consecutive unexcused absences or 5 or more total unexcused absences. This
will require a parent or legal guardian to meet with a team of school officials to
set up an Intervention Plan to improve attendance.