Absences and Tardies

Attendance Reporting

Please report you child's absence or tardy each day before 9:15am.

When parents know their child is going to be absent or tardy from school. State law requires that parents provide a satisfactory explanation for a child’s absence for all or any part of the school day. This will eliminate the need for the school to make a call to the home or workplace to confirm absences.

You can provide attendance information in one of these ways:

Please be sure to provide:

  • Your child’s full name
  • The teacher’s name
  • The reason for the absence or tardy
  • If your child is sick, please provide a specific description of the illness.
  • Please indicate whether your child has any of the following symptoms:
    • Feeling feverish or chills
    • Fever greater than or equal to 100.4 F
    • Headache (not due to another health condition, hunger, menstrual cramps stress, or injury)
    • A new cough (not due to another health condition)
    • Shortness of breath or breathing difficulties (not due to diagnosed respiratory condition or if different than normal pattern of chronic condition)
    • A new sore throat (not due to another health condition)
    • Congestion or runny nose (not related to allergies or health condition)
    • Fatigue (more tired than normal or sudden onset)
    • New muscle pain (not due to another health condition or that may have been caused by a specific activity such as physical exercise)
    • New loss of taste, smell, or appetite
    • Abdominal pain (not due to hunger, constipation, injury, or stress)
    • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea

It is important for the school to know if your child has contracted a communicable disease such as chicken pox, conjunctivitis, or strep throat.

Absences are understandable in situations of: Illness; death in the family; medical or dental appointment; observance of a religious holiday; or a family emergency.

To request a prearranged absence from school, please submit the "Request for Prearranged Absence Form" in advance. Request for prearranged Absence Form-Elementary

Schoolwork while on an Extended Absence

When a student is absent for an extended time, we ask that the student reads for at least 20 minutes and writes in a journal daily. Should a student have access to the internet, they may access posted assignments on Schoology. Due to continuous monitoring and reteaching of student learning, teachers are unable to pre-assign schoolwork. 

Absences Add Up: FCPS School Calendar Gives Time for Families to Travel

Families benefit from visiting relatives and reconnecting with friends throughout the year. If you are planning a trip, consider traveling when students are off from school, such as teacher workdays or FCPS holidays.

We appreciate that it’s not always easy to plan absences around the school calendar, however, regular attendance is important, so we ask that you check the school calendar first before planning a trip.  

Respecting the importance of attendance, parents of students with excessive absences and
unexcused tardies can expect follow up from the school administration. An accumulation of
unjustified absences and/or tardies is reason for the school administration to follow up. The
attendance guidelines for Island Creek are as follows:

  • When unexcused absences or tardies accumulate during a quarter, a letter from the principal’s office will be sent home.
  • When additional absences or tardies accumulate, a follow-up letter will be sent.
  • If unexcused tardies or absences continue, a conference and a referral could be made to Fairfax County Public Schools attendance officer.

Families are expected to make travel plans during times of school vacations. Parents should
seriously consider the educational implications of disrupting the educational progress for
family holidays. Absences for family holidays when school is in session are considered
unexcused. Teachers do not provide homework assignments for family holidays.

Mandatory Withdrawal
In order to comply with state recordkeeping requirements, students shall be withdrawn from FCPS student membership rolls after 15 consecutive days of absence regardless of whether their absences are excused or unexcused.  Withdrawn students are not excused from mandatory school attendance requirements and are expected to reenroll as soon as possible.  Students who withdraw to attend a non-FCPS school should notify FCPS as soon as possible and make reasonable attempts to follow the withdrawal procedures as determined by the school. Upon return, you will need to re-register your student. There is no guarantee that the student will be placed in the same classroom upon return.

FCPS Attendance Policies