PVMS Attendance Procedures 23-24

Sun, 09/03/2023 - 1:20pm

Research is clear that showing up for school has a huge impact on a student’s academic and social success, starting from pre-kindergarten and continuing through high school. 

  • Missing 10% (or about 18 days of a school year or 2 a month) can drastically affect a student’s academic success at each grade level.

  • By the 6th grade, absenteeism is one of three signs that can indicate if a student is at risk for dropping out of high school.

  • In the 9th grade, regular and high attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than 8th grade test scores.

Please help us support a culture of showing up to school every day!

Please review Policy 9010: https://policy.hcpss.org/9000/9010/

If your student is absent or will be absent, please contact us at the following email address to explain the reason:pvmsabsence@hcpss.org.  In the email please Include the following information:

  • Student First and Last Name

  • Grade 

  • Reason for absence (e.g., illness, bereavement, observance of a religious holiday, lack of transportation)

Discretionary Days

HCPSS students are granted 3 days a year to use at their discretion for scheduled interviews with prospective employers, visits to post-secondary institutions, family trips, civic engagement, and other special events.

  • Such absences may not occur during exam or state-mandated testing periods unless authorized by the principal/designee.

  • A written request for such absences to be lawful/excused should be submitted at least one week in advance to the principal/designee. Please download the PDF fillable Discretionary Absence Form and email it to pvmsabsence@hcpss.org. The form is also available in Chinese, Korean, and Spanish

  • If you are requesting a day for a religious holiday not identified by the Howard County Public School System school calendar, please download the PDF fillable Religious Obligation Form and email it to pvmsabsence@hcpss.org

What is the Difference Between Excused and Unexcused Absences?

Lawful Absence - An excused absence for any portion of the day under the following conditions:

  1. Illness of the student

  2. Death in the immediate family

  3. Court summons

  4. Observance of a religious holiday

  5. Hazardous weather conditions (as determined by the Superintendent)

  6. State emergency (as determined by the Governor)

  7. Suspension

  8. Lack of authorized transportation (school system transportation)

Unlawful Absence  - An unexcused absence for any reason other than those cited as lawful is presumed as unlawful and may constitute truancy.

  1. Missed bus

  2. Car trouble

  3. Traffic

  4. No parking

Parents/Guardians have five days from the date of the absence to email the reason for their absence. If the note is received after the five-day grace period, the student will be given an unexcused pass for the absence and will remain truant.

Late Arrivals Procedures

If your child is late to school, please either send in a note/email pvmsabsence@hcpss.org explaining the reason for the lateness if you are unable to sign your child into school. If you are accompanying your child into the school, please bring your phone with you.

Early Dismissals

Please email on the day of your student's early dismissal, pvmsabsence@hcpss.org, and indicate the time they will be picked up and by whom. Please bring your ID to show the main office.


With the collaborative effort of HCPSS parents, staff and students, we are confident that all students can have successful attendance. This will improve student success in school and in future life!