Sometimes students have to miss school for a variety of reasons. Our school receptionist, Mrs. Cotton, handles absences at Van Buren. Please email your students absence to or call the office (317-839-2575) any time a student will not be in school. The school will contact the parents when a student is absent and parental notification has not been received.

Research shows that students who have regular school attendance are more successful in school. With this in mind, PCSC places an emphasis on attendance and encourages all students to be at school, ready to learn, every day.


Students who accrue more than five absences may be at risk academically. If that point is reached, steps will be taken to prevent further absences. Students who accrue excessive absences will be sent a reminder letter. If absences continue, at ten absences, an attendance contract will be completed with administration. It should be noted that all absences, even those marked as excused or pre-arranged, accumulate toward these totals.

1. Five Day Absence Letters will be sent when any student has missed five cumulative days of school, not including those excused by medical notes. The purpose of this letter is to make parents aware of the number of days their child has been absent from school.

2. Ten Day Absence Letters are sent when a child has missed ten cumulative days of school. Following the ten-day letter, all absences must have medical documentation in order to be excused.

3. If absences continue, a report must be made to the Department of Child Services.

4. Project Attend Contracts are used in collaboration with the Hendricks County Prosecutor’s Office to help increase student attendance. The contracts are an agreement between the school and family to assure that children have regular school attendance.


Excused absences are defined as absences that the school corporation regards as legitimate reasons for being out of school. These are aligned with Indiana state law. Indiana Code allows five causes for an absence to be excused. These include:

· Illness verified by note or phone call from parent/guardian

· Illness verified by note from physician

· Family funeral

· Maternity

· Military Connected Families (e.g. absences related to deployment and return)


Indiana Law prescribes which absences are exceptions and are not included as absences on a student’s attendance. As per (IC 20-33-2) these include: (1) service as a page for the Indiana General Assembly, (2) serving on the Precinct Election Board or the helper to a political candidate, (3) a student who is issued a subpoena to appear in court as a witness in a judicial proceeding, (4) ordered to active duty with the Indiana National Guard for not 3 more than ten days, (5) Serving with the Civil Air Patrol for up to five (5) days, (6) exhibiting at the State Fair, and (7) educationally related non-classroom activity.


An unexcused absence is any absence not covered under the definitions of excused or



A student may be allowed make-up work for an absence caused by a family emergency, even if it falls in the “unexcused” category. This absence may not exceed one (1) day per incident and will count toward the total number of absences. The parent should call the office on the day of the emergency and send a note of explanation with the student the following day; final determination will be at the building principal’s discretion.


Vacations: Families should plan their vacations during times when school is not in session to avoid student absences. The granting of pre-arranged absences is not intended for adding additional vacation days to the school year, but rather for unavoidable absences or once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Taking a student out of school for a vacation that does not count as an educational activity qualifies as an unexcused absence.

The following applies to prearranged absences:

1. Parents must obtain and sign a form for a prearranged absence and return that form to the principal’s office. The form can be found HERE.

2. The form must be submitted ahead of time, allowing ample time for needed signatures to be obtained and all stakeholders to be notified; recommended submission is five (5) days prior to the absence.

3. If a student has previously been absent for several days, a conference may be required by the administration to discuss the ramifications of additional absences.

4. Class work missed must be made up promptly upon the student’s return. Students need to check with teachers regarding an agreeable timeframe for make-up work to be completed; the teacher may provide work ahead of time at his/her discretion.

5. The prearranged absence will be reported as excused or unexcused (depending on the nature of the absence) according to the Indiana Compulsory Attendance Law (IC-20-33-2), and make-up work will be allowed for credit. Students and parents are reminded that even though make-up work will be allowed for credit, some classroom activities simply cannot be replicated. The instruction missed during class time may adversely affect students’ grades (especially in participation-type classes) and understanding of material.

6. Any prearranged absence(s) will count toward the total number of days absent.

7. No prearranged absence will be approved if a student is scheduled to take the state required achievement tests and/or locally administered achievement tests during the requested time frame. Parents considering pre-arranged absences should consult the school calendar and the classroom teacher prior to making plans to ensure there are no conflicts.


If a child needs to miss school due to illness, he/she will need to make up missed work once he/she is feeling better. Parents may contact the child’s teacher to request make-up work. Some work may be available on the teacher’s online Google Classroom platform. If a request for homework is made on a day that a substitute teacher is in the classroom, the work will be gathered upon the teacher’s return. Upon returning from an absence, the student should consult with the teacher to ensure all missed assignments are accounted for. A note or phone call explaining any absence is required to permit a student to make up missed work. The number of days a student has to return make-up work for credit shall be equal to the number of days missed, plus one. Beyond that, assignments may only receive credit if the teacher has approved it. If a child has missed two or more days, parents should contact the teacher and may request that any additional missed work be made available for pick-up in the office if it is not easily accessible through Google Classroom. Such requests should be made by 9:00 a.m. for pick-up after 3:00 p.m.


It is recommended that parents schedule any medical, dental, counseling, or eye appointments outside of school hours. If this is not possible, the following guidelines apply. Students absent due to a medical appointment shall be indicated on the report card as an MI (Medical Interruption) during each grading period. The rules are as follows:

1. Medical appointments count as time absent from school and will be reported as such on the report card. Such medical interruptions will count against a perfect attendance record for the grading period.

2. For the MI notation to be applied, rather than “tardy” or “left early” the student must present a note from the medical institution indicating that the student was seen. The note is to be given to the nurse upon returning to school.


If a student has been ill, he/she must be fever-free without the aid of fever- reducing medication for twenty-four hours before returning to school. Students experiencing vomiting or diarrhea as a result of illness should also be symptom-free for twenty-four hours before returning to school.

If any guidelines exist for a specific illness a child experiences (i.e. quarantine protocols for COVID-19 or similar), current health department recommendations or other Board-approved protocols will be followed.

A physician’s verification of illness is needed If a student is absent five consecutive days or more. Upon the child’s return please provide the office with a doctor’s note stating the reason for the absence and that the student is now able to attend school. If an absence is due to a contagious disease, a doctor’s written approval must be provided for readmission.


Students are expected to arrive at school on time and be prepared for class when the school day begins. Students, who arrive at school late, up to 1⁄2 day, or leave before the school day is over, shall be considered tardy (a.m.) or “left early”(p.m.), unless proof of a medical appointment was submitted to the school. Students arriving to school after 8:50 a.m. must be signed in by an adult in the main office and will be counted tardy. All students should be ready to begin the day in their classrooms by 8:50 a.m.