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This webpage is a compilation of highlights and is not inclusive of all of the CA state and District policies on Attendance. For more information, please refer to

Please contact the Front Office via phone 650-322-5935 ext 1 or email Addison Attendance at if your child will not be at school.Attendance Expectations
Students who attend school consistently have a greater chance of excelling academically. Being present in the classroom provides students the ability to ask for clarification, engage in meaningful discussion, and take notes in preparation for examinations. Daily attendance promotes educational success and builds stronger relationships with peers and teachers. Consistent attendance is also recognized as a protective factor that provides students with the foundation to grow into happy, healthy, and productive adults. 

The Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD) recognizes that success in school is related to prompt and regular classroom attendance. Frequent absences or tardies, which result in a student missing all or parts of presentations, demonstrations, discussions, explanations, and/or other classroom activities, are detrimental to the individual student and the class. 

Further, school attendance is compulsory as per Education Code (48200); therefore, student non-attendance and/or persistent tardiness are matters of serious concern (Board Policy, BP 5113). 


Highlights of our Attendance Policy: TARDY

  • Students are expected to be either lined up to enter their classroom or in their classroom at 8:15:00 when the 2nd bell rings. Students who are still arriving to school, in our driveway, or walking through the main building/campus when the 2nd bell rings are counted as tardy. 
  • After the 2nd bell rings, students are sent to the School Office to check in. They fill out the Tardy form and take a check-in slip to their Teacher.
  • After 30 minutes or 8:45am
    • Students are considered "Way Tardy" after 30 minutes or 8:45am. Way Tardies and 30+ minute long absences during the school day are counted as absences CA Ed Code 48260 (a).
    • Lunch orders are submitted. Students who arrive to school after 8:45am and who would like a school lunch may pick up a "back-up" lunch.
  • Students returning to school from a medical, dental, Covid-19 related, optometric, or chiropractic appointment must provide a written note from their medical professional in order for their Tardy to be excused.

My child is sick, should I send them to school?

For the safety and protection of all, students should not attend school with any of the symptoms listed below. If a student is at school with these symptoms, the parent/guardian will be called to pick up the student.

  • Fever of 100 degrees or higher
  • Productive cough or Nasal secretions with yellow or green discharge
  • Eyes that are red, swollen, crusting, or draining
  • Ears that are draining
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting or severe nausea
  • Head Lice

As always, the choice to keep your student at home belongs to the parent. Please know that if your child does not have any of the aforementioned symptom(s), they are encouraged to come to school.

Highlights of our Attendance Policy: ABSENCE

  • If your student will be absent, please call the Attendance Clerk at 650.322.5935 ext 1 or email at Please let us know why your student is absent.
    • Health-related medical appointments, illnesses, testing + for Covid are excused.
    • Travel, family vacations or events, school visits, being a close contact, and not wanting to come to school are unexcused.
    • For a broader list of circumstances and whether or not they are excused, please refer to our Handbook.
  • In health related cases when a student is absent for five (5) consecutive days, a physician's note is requested in order to excuse the absences.
  • in the event that a student is absent for five (5) non-consecutive days or more than or equal to 10% of the semester (i.e. when a student has an absenteeism rate of 10% or higher), a physician's note is requested in order to excuse the absences.

Highlights of our Attendance Policy: TRUANCY
After the 3rd Unexcused Absence or Unexcused Way Tardy, the school will automatically send a Letter of Truancy to the parents of the student per CA State law.

Early Dismissal 
A child may be picked up early from school by the parent. A phone call and/or email to the school office and/or teacher is helpful, but not necessary. Please come to the office a few minutes early to allow time for the school office to call the teacher and then for the student to pack up their things. Please note that the school office/teacher will not pre-arrange to have your student in the office waiting for pick-up; we keep the student in class for as much as possible. 

Actions to Address Poor Attendance  
Given the importance of school attendance to academic success and the requirements put for by the Education Code stating that school attendance is compulsory, the district makes every effort to keep students engaged in school. The following actions may be taken to address poor school attendance:

  • Parent contact/ meetings to discuss school attendance
  • Development of attendance contracts
  • Attendance at a District Attorney Mediation
  • Referral to SARB, Student Attendance Review Board