Homework requests (press 4)
Dear Parents and Guardians,
I would like to bring to your attention some very important changes the State has made in
recording student absences. Regular attendance at school is vital for student success. However, it is
understandable that from time to time a student will be absent from school. According to N.J.S.A.
18A:36-15, all school districts are required to record daily student absences in one of the following
1. Excused (see below examples as per N.J.S.A. 18A:36-15).
Absences because of religious holidays shall be recorded as an excused
o Absences approved by the Department of Education e.g., Take Your Child to
2. Unexcused Absence that does not count towards truancy.
Absences due to illness accompanied with appropriate notification or
documentation from parent/doctor
o Absences due to bereavement, family emergency, doctor’s appointment etc.
that cannot be scheduled outside of the regular school day hours,
accompanied with appropriate notification or documentation
3. Unexcused Absence that counts towards truancy.
o Student vacations that occur when school is in session are unexcused
absences that count towards truancy. Parents should plan vacations during
scheduled breaks so as not to incur an unexcused absence of this nature.
The above examples are only a few. Additional information regarding student attendance and
definition of absences can be found within Policy/Regulation #5200 located on the Wyckoff Public
Schools website under the Board of Education Tab - Policies and Regulations or at this link:
Attendance Policy and Procedure in Wyckoff
- In order to clarify how absences are recorded and monitored in the schools, it is important to
review a few details regarding the District’s Policy and absence protocols:
- If a student will be absent, the parent is required to call the school office before the start of
the student’s school day.
- If a student is leaving school early (returning or not), the parent/student should provide notice
to the school office at or before the start of the school day.
- In order for a student to be considered present for a regular school day, the student must be
present for four (4) hours of instruction. In addition, one hour must be in the morning session
and one hour in the afternoon session.
- If a student is absent for a non-communicable illness for a period of more than four (4) school
days, upon return to school, the student must provide a physician’s statement of the student’s
illness with medical clearance to return to school.
- If a student is absent by reason of having or being suspected of having a communicable disease,
e.g. flu, measles, pertussis, etc., upon return to school, the student must present written
evidence of being free of communicable disease to the school nurse in accordance with Policy
The Wyckoff School District must respond to all unexcused absences in accordance with New
Jersey State law. This includes, but is not limited to: following up with the parent to investigate the
nature of all unexcused absence(s); creating an action plan and referring the matter to the schoolbased
Intervention and Referral Services Team (I&RS) for review as needed.
According to State law, if a pupil between the ages of 6 and 16 accumulates unexcused
absences that count towards truancy of 10 or more days in one school year, the pupil is truant
pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A: 38-27 and the school principal must make a mandatory referral to the court
program required by the New Jersey Administrative Office of the Courts.
Please follow these guidelines to ensure the proper reporting and monitoring of your child’s
attendance. If you have any questions regarding these procedures, please contact your building
principal or school nurse.
Richard D. Kuder
Superintendent of Schools