Palisades High School

Attendance Newsletter 2023-2024


The “Compulsory School Age” in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is the period of a child’s life from the time the child’s parents elect to have the child enter school and which shall be no later than 6 years of age until the child reaches 18 years of age. The term does not include a child who holds a certificate of graduation from a regularly accredited, licensed, registered or approved high school. Please refer to PDE’s Basic Education Circular (BEC) which provides guidance on the implementation of law, regulation and policy.

PHS Absence Procedure

When a student is to be absent from school, parents should call the school at 610-847-5131, ext. 2305 by 8:00 a.m. Messages can be left at any time by calling the above number. After an absence, a written legal excuse, signed by a parent/guardian, is required within 3 school days.

Students should submit excuse notes to their period 2 teacher or the main office upon their return to school. Excuse notes may also be emailed to the attendance office at or faxed to 610-847-2562. Electronic excuses via our automated email system are also accepted. The only way to access the form for an online absence note is through the automated email which is sent to the parent/guardian by the school district when a student is marked absent in period 2.

PHS Attendance Policy


If excuses are not received, the day will be recorded as unexcused. If the student is age 18 or under, the absence is illegal and parents will be subject to the state’s Compulsory Attendance Law. Please review the SCHOOL RESPONSES TO UNLAWFUL ABSENCES located in the Student Handbook and the procedures outlined in this form.

If a student will be absent for at least three or more days, the parents should contact the school nurse to inform him/her of the nature of the illness or injury. Students should also reference their respective Canvas courses and/or contact their teacher for missed work during any extended illness.

Make-up privileges will be granted by teachers to any student who has been legally absent providing the student requests the privilege within three days after returning to school. Teachers may request students to take tests and make up class work immediately upon returning to school if circumstances dictate.

If a student will be absent two (2) or more weeks due to a long term confinement, parents are requested to contact the school nurse or school counselor to discuss supportive measures.

A student illegally absent from school (truancy, cutting class, failure to hand in a mandated doctor’s excuse) does not have the right to make up a test and will receive an “F” for class participation or a test administered during this period of absence.

Late arrival seniors who are present and neglect to sign in at the main office kiosk, as required by their schedule, will be considered to be illegally absent from school.

Attendance Procedures for Palisades Cyber Academy

Attendance for Palisades cyber students may be achieved in one of the following manners:

1. Be within 5% of the expected progress of their course. For example, if expected progress is 50% completion, the student should have no less than 45% of the course complete (this policy applies to all third party online courses).

2. Have grades above a C- (70%) in each of their Palisades online courses.

3. Student meets the minimum weekly workload as outlined by the teacher of record in the course pacing schedule and weekly announcements.

4. Students must meet the same attendance requirements as Palisades face to face students. PCA students should be seen and heard in synchronous class times.

5. All students enrolled in cyber or blended courses will be made aware of attendance policy and its availability online at the school website and as part of the student handbook.

PHS Lateness Policy

Students are expected to report to their period 1 class by 7:40 a.m. Anyone reporting after 7:40 a.m. must report directly to the Main Office in order to sign in. FAILURE TO REPORT TO THE MAIN OFFICE TO SIGN IN WILL RESULT IN AN UNEXCUSED ABSENCE FOR THE DAY AND FURTHER DISCIPLINARY ACTION.

Please note: whether you bring a parent note or not, your late(s) will count against you.

During each semester, on the second unexcused late to school, students will be issued a warning. Upon the fourth unexcused late and on each late thereafter, students are subject to disciplinary action including detentions, loss of parking privileges, early dismissal, and/or suspensions.

Tardiness will only be excused if due to illness or doctor appointment and the student must present a doctor’s note to the attendance office upon arrival to school that day. Doctor’s notes will be required for the fourth and subsequent lates due to illness per semester.

Unexcused lates, resulting in a student arriving after 8:15 a.m., will be considered an unexcused absence from the period 1 class; continued unexcused lates will negatively impact a student’s course grade, as they will be missing valuable instruction. Students reporting late must bring a written excuse with them and submit this note to the main office.

Please review the following the following times which denote when a student's tardiness/early dismissal results in an absence from school:

Arrival times:

Tardy (excused or unexcused): 7:40-9:40 a.m.

Half day absence (excused or unexcused): 9:41-11:40 a.m. (over 4 hours missed)

Full day absence (excused or unexcused): arrival after 11:40 a.m. (over 4 hours missed)

Dismissal times:

Early dismissal: after 12:27 p.m. (missing 2 hours or less)

Half day (excused or unexcused): 10:27 a.m. - 12:27 p.m.

Full day (excused or unexcused): prior to 10:27 a.m. (missing more than 4 hours)

Planned Trips

Although attendance in school is required and necessary, there are times that students will benefit from an educational trip. The Board directs that any parent(s) or guardian(s) planning to take their child on a trip which necessitates missing regular school day(s) must submit a request in writing at least 5 days in advance.

Any trip of 10 or fewer days duration may be approved at the discretion of the building principal or his/her designee. This approval will be granted depending upon the student’s attendance record during that year and the student’s classroom progress.

A request for a single trip with a duration of more than 10 days, or requests for several trips during the school year whose total exceeds 10 days, must be approved by the superintendent.

Any student who goes on an approved trip must complete the following procedures prior to being approved for the excused absence:

  • Student’s parents must send an email/note requesting an excused absence due to a trip.
  • The student is required to have the form completed by his/her teachers at least 5 days prior to the trip’s departure. This form must be completed before the trip is approved.
  • If a student is attending a college visit, he/she must obtain the college admissions counselor’s signature for final approval.
  • Upon receiving the parent’s written request and the completed form, which is the student’s responsibility, the administrator will notify the student and/or the parent whether or not the absence was not approved.