Attendance Policy & Excuse Slips

Mrs. Rothrock handles all attendance matters in the SES office. The link below will provide you with the district form when your child is out for the day or tardy. Please read the district policy listed below.

610-791-2800 ext 4502

Mrs. Rothrock's Email

Absence/Tardy Slips

Planned Absence Request Form


(Salisbury Township School Board Attendance Policy #2D.1)

Attendance Notice to Parents/Guardians

It is mandatory for all children of compulsory school age, having a legal residence in Pennsylvania, to attend school in which the subjects and activities prescribed by the Standards of the State Board of Education are taught. 

Compulsory school age is defined as students who enter school as beginners until age 17.

What is an excused absence?
An absence is considered “excused” where the child has a written explanation from his/her parent or physician that provides an acceptable reason for the absence.

  • Parents/guardians or students must submit the written explanation within three calendar days of the absence.

  • An absence that should not be categorized as unlawful is one in which a student who is involved with the county children and youth agency or juvenile probation office is required to leave school for the purposes of attending court hearings related to their involvement with these agencies. A student will also be excused to obtain professional health care or therapy by a licensed healthcare professional. The following are not acceptable absences: employment, visiting away from home, shopping, or oversleeping.

  • When the student is sent home during the school day by the school nurse, the student’s absence will be considered “excused” for the day that the student is sent home. Parents/guardians must follow the above process for any days after the day that the student is sent home by the nurse. Failure to provide a written excuse within three days of the absence for an acceptable reason will result in the absence being declared unexcused/unlawful.

How many days of absence can be verified without a physician’s’ excuse?

A maximum of ten days of cumulative lawful absences verified by parental notification may be permitted during a school year. All absences beyond ten cumulative days will require an excuse from a physician. The excuse from the physician must be written out by the physician who treated the child or the physician who supervised the treatment of the child. Cumulative is defined as total absences per school year. Educational trip requests (college visits, etc.) are parent requests and will be counted toward the maximum of ten days of cumulative lawful absences per school year.

What is late or tardy?

Late is arriving to school for an approved reason and tardy is arriving to school for an unapproved reason. Students will be classified as late or tardy if they arrive to school within the first 90 minutes of the school day. After 90 minutes, students will be considered absent for one half (1/2) day. Students missing more than 1/3 of any school day will be considered absent for a full day.

What happens when a child has unexcused absences?

After a student has three (3) unexcused absences, by certified and regular mail, the school will send a Parent/Guardian Notice of Truancy letter to the parent/guardian who lives with the child. If the child is not living with a biological or adoptive parent, a copy or the notice will also be sent to the biological or adoptive parent, provided that the parent’s mailing address is on file with the school and the parent is not restricted from receiving the information by a court order. At the high school, students may not make up schoolwork for the period of the unlawful absence.

If the child continues to have unexcused absences after the school has sent a Parent/Guardian Notice of Truancy letter, the building principal will coordinate a School Attendance Improvement Conference (SAIC) to discuss the child’s absences and develop School Attendance Improvement Plan to improve the child’s attendance, with or without additional services. The child’s parent/guardian will be invited and encouraged, although not legally required, to attend the SAIC.

What is habitual truancy?

Habitual truancy is when a child has six (6) or more unexcused absences and/or has accumulated excessive tardy minutes. Three hours and 15 minutes of accumulated tardy equals 1⁄2 day unexcused absence. Six hours and 30 minutes of accumulated tardy equals one full day unexcused absence.

What are the consequences for habitual truancy?

After a SAIC is held, there are additional consequences for habitual truancy. The consequences depend on the age of the child.

  • For children under the age of 15, habitual truancy will result in a referral to Children and Youth Services (CYS). The school may also file a citation in the office of the District Magistrate against the child’s parent/guardian.

  •  For children over the age of 15, habitual truancy will result in the filing of a citation in the office of the District Magistrate against the child or the parent/guardian who is living with the child.

What are the penalties for a citation from the District Magistrate for habitual truancy?

  • A fine not to exceed $300 together with court costs for the first offense. The maximum fines may increase with each subsequent offense.

  • Community service.

  • The completion of a course or program approved by the judge.

  • Where the parent/guardian fails to follow through with the penalty imposed by the court, the parent/guardian may be sentenced to three (3) days in county jail.

  • Where a child does not follow through with the penalty imposed by the court, the child may have his/or her learner’s permit or driver’s license suspended.

Where can I get more information?

Salisbury Township School District School Board Policy 2.4.4 contains all of the policy and school code regulations for compulsory attendance.

Temporary Medical Excusals (Salisbury Township School District Board Policy #2D.2)

Salisbury Township School District recognizes that students may need to be absent for an extended period of time due to unforeseen medical issues. In order to accommodate students with this need, the following must be met:

  • A student will be considered for a temporary medical excusal if the student suffers from a temporary medical and/or psychiatric condition considered medically urgent and so severe that: a) it is likely to persist for more than two (2) weeks, b) it prevents even partial attendance during the two (2) week timeframe and c) the excusal is recommended by a licensed physician, psychiatrist or psychologist. The parent/guardian must submit a complete application for approval. These can be obtained from the school counselor, completed by both the parent/guardian and physician and submitted to the Principal.

  • Temporary medical excusals will be in effect for a period not to exceed 60 calendar days with only one renewal permitted based upon completion of a new application. Students on a temporary medical excusal are not eligible to participate in any clubs, field trips, programs/performances and/or other extracurricular activities. Tutoring during a temporary medical excusal may be provided at the discretion of the District. It will only be provided for excusals exceeding four (4) weeks and shall not exceed five (5) hours per week. It is the parent’s/guardian’s responsibility to obtain a student’s work from the school and must be present during the temporary tutoring.

Absence Procedure

Salisbury Elementary has a telephone answering service for parents to report the absence of a child from school. Please call 610-791-2800 ext 4502 before 9:15 AM and state your child's name, name of homeroom teacher, and the reason for absence. If we do not hear from you by 9:15 AM, parents/guardians will receive an automated Thrillshare Messenger phone call to verify that your child is home ill, but safe.

In addition to calling in your child’s absence from school, the state law requires that you send in a written excuse when your child returns. This excuse requires a parent signature and it needs to state the following: child’s name, date of absence, and specific reason for absence. A written excuse is required each time a child is absent, late, or dismissed. If no excuse is returned within three (3) days after returning from an absence, the absence is recorded as unexcused.

Planned Absences for Vacation/Educational Trip

Requests for a planned absence must be made in writing at least two weeks prior to the absence. Planned Absence Request forms are available in the office and on Salisbury Elementary School’s website.

Administrator approval is required for planned absences. Requests must be submitted at least two weeks in advance so that the teacher can make necessary preparations to provide you with the academic material that will be covered while on vacation. A letter of permission will then be granted by the principal in writing, after careful consideration of student attendance and academic standing. If approved, the student will be responsible to
complete work that will be missed during his/her absence. The number of planned absences will be determined by the administration. These pre-approved absences will be counted towards the ten (10) days as previously stated in the above Frequent Absences section.

Also, check the Salisbury Township School District Calendar every year for the week of Standardized Testing before scheduling any family trips so you can give your child the opportunity to take the assessment in an atmosphere most conducive for testing with his/her classmates.