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Attendance Policy

Wantagh High School

Attendance Policy - Effective September 2023

The Board of Education recognizes an important relationship between class attendance and student performance.  Consequently, each marking period a student’s final grade may be based on classroom participation as well as student’s performance on homework, tests, papers, projects, etc. 

Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes.  Consistent with the importance of classroom participation, unexcused absences may affect a student’s class participation grade for the marking period. 

In accordance with the NYSED definition of chronic absenteeism, students may be placed on academic probation for those courses where their absentee rate (excused or unexcused) is greater than 10%. Those students who do not improve their rate of attendance after exceeding the 10% threshold will be at risk of losing credit for the course, or not being promoted to the next grade level. Students who are chronically absent with a rate that exceeds 10% (excused or unexcused) may be denied the privilege of participating in or attending field trips, athletics and/or extracurricular events, denied course credit, and/or grade level promotion, at the discretion of the building principal.

All student absences must be accounted for. It is the parent's or legal guardian's responsibility to notify the school office within at least 24 hours of the absence and to provide a written excuse on the first day of the student's return to school. For homeless students, the District's Homeless Liaison will assist the student in providing or obtaining documentation if needed.


Absent Exempt - Student is not present in a school or regularly scheduled class due to school-related reasons. Examples of this include, but are not limited to: Bussing Issue, Field Trip, Homebound Instruction, Music Lessons, PPS/Guidance/ Administrative Meetings, Support Services (OT, PT, Speech, etc.).

  • Although exempt absences do not count towards the 10% absentee rate, students are required to make up any missed work because of that absence. Make-up opportunities must be completed by a date specified by the student's teacher or departmental grading policies for the class in question.

Absent Excused - Student is not present in a school or regularly scheduled class due to at least one of the following reasons: Attendance at Health Clinics, College Visit, Approved Cooperative Work Programs, Court Appearance, Death in the Family, Family Illness, Personal Illness, Impassable Roads, Military Visit, Quarantine, Religious Observance.

  • Students with properly excused absences may make up missed work for each excused absence. This work must be completed by a date specified by the student's teacher or within departmental grading policies for the course in question. All make-up work in classes due to excused absences will be part of the consideration to assign course credit and/or grant grade promotion for those who have exceeded the 10% threshold.

Absent Unexcused - All other absences not listed shall be considered unexcused.

  • Students who miss coursework due to an unexcused absence are not entitled to be provided with an opportunity to submit work that was due on the day they were absent.


Unexcused absences will result in disciplinary action consistent with the district's code of conduct. Those penalties may include, for example, detention or in-school suspension. Students may also be denied the privilege of participating in or attending field trips, athletics and/or extracurricular events.

In addition, designated staff member(s) will contact the student's parents and/or legal guardians and the student's guidance counselor. Such staff member(s) shall remind parents and or legal guardians of the attendance policy, explain the ramifications of unexcused absences, stress the importance of class attendance, and discuss appropriate intervention strategies to correct the situation.

In the event students are assigned detention, they are to report to the Detention Room (Room 129) during regularly scheduled detention hours as outlined below.

Each detention will be ONE hour and can be served on:

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday: 2:20 pm - 3:20 pm (AFTER SCHOOL)

Friday 6:30 - 7:30 am (BEFORE SCHOOL)



All 9th grade students must eat their lunch in the freshman cafeteria and are not allowed to leave the building for lunch.

Students in 10th and 11th grade may only go out to lunch after the Out to Lunch form has been completed by their parent or guardian and returned. All 12th grade students may go out to lunch if they are in good standing within the school. If a student goes out to lunch and is late to their next class or fails to return for classes, the regular Late to Class and Cut Policy will be in effect. If students are excessively late returning from lunch, they will lose their Out to Lunch privileges.

No student is permitted to leave school during an assigned Study Hall. Students must remain in their assigned study hall for the entire period.

Homeroom provides a brief period to conduct the morning exercises and it is considered a class period. All students must be present in their specifically assigned homeroom. If a student fails to attend their homeroom period, the Cut Policy will be in effect.