Los Alamitos High School Attendance Policy

Attendance Office Direct Contact Information

Last Name A-K: 562-799-4796 or  

Last Name L-Z: 562-799-4797 or 

FAX Number: 562-799-4798

Attendance Policy 

Classroom attendance is considered to be an integral part of the learning experience at Los Alamitos High School. As such, students must actively participate in classroom instructional activities designed by the teacher, and missing these learning experiences may affect students’ academic success. To support teaching and learning, the State of California requires that a student attends school between the ages of 6 and 18 or until graduation from high school, whichever comes first. 

The following policy and guidelines for attendance are what Los Alamitos High School has adopted to ensure our state’s mandate:

Excused Absences

California Education Code 48205 - A student absence will only be excused if the reason for the absence, as reported by the parent/guardian, meets the criteria specified in California Education Code 48205 (see Excused Absences below). The parent/guardian is obligated to compel the regular and prompt attendance of their student to school.  The State of California requires that when a student is absent, the parent/guardian must contact the school and verify the reason for, and the dates of, the absence. According to the California Education Code, students arriving to class 30 minutes after the bell that signals the start of the period are deemed truant.

Excused Absences:

California Education Code 48205 states that a student shall be excused from school when the absence is due to:

  1. Illness (parent/guardian must verify by phone call, email or written note)
  2. Bereavement (one day within the state, three days outside the state)
  3. Quarantine (under the direction of a county or city health officer)
  4. Medical Appointment (absence verified by a medical professional on medical office letterhead)
  5. Court Appearance
  6. Religious Retreat (shall not exceed 4 hours per semester)

Parents or guardians must verify absences within 3 days, or the absences will be recorded as unexcused and may result in truancy

Medical Appointment or Illness Absence

It is the school’s responsibility to verify the facts of medical/dental appointments or illness absences. These absences may be designated as unexcused or truant if the facts cannot be verified.  If the District feels that a student is absent excessively, the District may require a doctor’s note after every absence.

Please make medical/dental appointments outside of school hours. If that is not possible, it is imperative to have your student attend the period(s) during which he/she does not have the appointment.

The student will be issued a medical/dental excuse for those periods missed for the following: 

  • Student has a medical/dental appointment during school hours - verification needed from medical office.
  • Student stays home with prior parental permission because of an illness with a temperature or is infectious – verification needed from parent.
  • Student is in the Health Office with the written permission of the school/district nurse and the classroom teacher.

After 3 consecutive excused illness absences, a doctor’s note will be required, or the 4th absence will be marked as unverified or truant.


Attendance at the funeral of an immediate family member will be excused (1 day within the state, 3 days out of state).

Tardy Policy

California Education Code 48260—Any student who is absent from school without a valid excuse, more than three days or tardy more than three days in one school year is a truant and shall be reported to the Attendance Office. Students arriving to class after the bell signaling the start of the period are deemed tardy. All tardies will be tracked through the Attendance Office. The Attendance Office will make SART and SARB (see definitions below) referrals for multiple tardies.

School Activity Absence

School activity absences (athletics, field trips, special events, etc.) will be cleared by the sport’s head coach or the specific activity’s director.

Excused Suspension Absence  

If a student does not attend school due to a suspension, the Campus Supervision Office will contact the Attendance Office to inform that the student was suspended. Readmission after a suspension is through the Campus Supervision Office. The student will be allowed to complete all assignments and tests missed during the suspension that can reasonably be provided.  The student will receive full credit upon satisfactory completion within a reasonable period of time, but no less than equal the amount of time of the suspension.

Excused Absences and Grades

A student’s grade may be affected when absences become excessive, because of missed assignments and diminished class participation. The school will notify the parents with a progress report by email or first-class mail when the student is in danger of failing the class. A student absent from school for an excused absence (see Excused Absence above) will be allowed to complete all assignments and tests missed during the absence that can be reasonably provided.  Upon satisfactory completion of the assignment(s) and within a reasonable period of time, the student shall be given full credit. The teacher of the class from which a student is absent shall determine which tests and assignments shall be reasonably equivalent to, but not necessarily identical to, the tests and assignments that the student missed during the absence.  California Education Code 48205.

For the above excused absences that are cleared before the 3 days allotted time,  each teacher will determine the time allowed for completion of makeup work, but not less than the amount of time equal to that missed. Students with a significant number of absences may accumulate missing work in an amount which would warrant no credit or a failing grade in the course.

Notifying School of Absence 

The day a student is absent; the parent/guardian is to phone or email the Attendance Office: 562-799-4796 or (A- K last names) 562-799-4797 or (L-Z last names) and provide the following information:

  • Date of the absence
  • Student’s first and last name
  • Parent/guardian name and relationship to student
  • Reason for absence

Absences must be cleared by a school-verified parent/guardian phone call, email, or written note. Although parent phone calls or emails are preferable, notes written to excuse a student’s absence must be written and signed by a parent/guardian whose signature appears on the Student Emergency Card. Any absence that is not cleared by a parent’s/guardian’s phone call, email, or written note by the end of the 3rd business day after the absence will be recorded as truant. Parents/guardians who will be out of town for an extended period of time need to contact the Attendance Office.

Unexcused Absences and Grades

Examples of unexcused absences include, but are not limited to:

  • Car trouble
  • Oversleeping
  • Missing metro transportation /carpool
  • Traffic
  • Family vacation

Note: Even when a parent/guardian reports a student absence to the Attendance Office, if the reason given for the absence does not meet the criteria outlined by the State of California Education Code in the excused absence section, the absence will be coded as parent verified unexcused (U Code), but will not be excused. Teachers are not required to provide make-up work for the following:

  • Truant absences
  • Verified unexcused absences
  • Unverified absences
  • Health absences without verification,
  • Absences that are not cleared prior to the allotted period of 3 school days

A student who has five unexcused absences in any one school year may be considered a habitual truant and may be referred to the SART team, followed by a meeting with the Orange County District Attorney and a referral to the School Attendance Review Board (SARB).

Saturday Academic Intervention Academy & Loss of Activities List

Saturday Academic Intervention Academy (S.A.I.A) is an opportunity for students to make up the time they have missed due to tardies and truancies. Students with multiple tardies and truancies who do not attend assigned S.A.I.A will be placed on the “Loss of Activities List.”  Students must clear all S.A.I.A hours resulting from tardies, truancies, and discipline issues (see Discipline Code) by attending S.A.I.A, participating in campus beautification, or attending Lunch Detentions during lunch. Clearing S.A.I.A hours is required in order to be removed from the Loss of Activities List and for participation in school activities including but not limited to:  Parking Passes, Off-Campus Lunch Pass, Campus Dances, Winter Formal, Prom, any contest, nomination, or Graduation Activities.

  • Any truancy during a school day will result in Saturday Academic Intervention Academy (S.A.I.A) 
  • The Attendance Office will assign S.A.I.A once an unverified absence is declared truant. 
  • Students will receive S.A.I.A notification for attendance violations.  This notification will be delivered to the class where the tardy/truancy occurred.
  • Failure to serve S.A.I.A will result in students being placed on the “Loss of Activities List.”
  • A student will be truant if leaving school without prior parental notification to the school, or if they leave campus without checking out with the Attendance Office or Nurse’s Office. Parents MAY NOT clear truancies received if a student decides not to go to a particular class.

Campus Beautification

For students that are unable to attend S.A.I.A because of job, sport, or family obligations, an alternative to S.A.I.A exists in the form of Campus Beautification.  Campus Beautifications are held weekdays, after school, between 2:40 pm and 3:30 pm, and students must be present the entire time for the Campus Beautification to count towards Loss of Activities clearance.  To sign-up for it, contact Campus Beautification in the Attendance Office.  Two Campus Beautifications are equivalent to attending a 4-hour S.A.I.A.

Lunch Detention

Lunch Detentions exist to support student accountability for truancies and tardies.  Lunch Detentions occur daily during lunch in Room 602.  Students must be present for the full lunch period for the detention to count towards Loss Of Activities clearance (a five-minute grace period for getting food will be allotted).  Six Lunch Detentions are equivalent to a 4-hour S.A.I.A.

“Banking Saturday Academic Intervention Academy”

Los Alamitos High School does not support students' “banking” S.A.I.As, Campus Beautifications, or Lunch Detentions in advance of future attendance infractions.  All students with “clear” records will not be able to attend these offerings in anticipation of future infractions.

Saturday Academic Intervention Academy Calendar

  • Saturday Academic Intervention Academy is currently scheduled for the following dates during the 22/23 school year:


 no dates






























Saturday Academic Intervention Academy Rules

  • Students will report to Lecture Hall (153/154) promptly at 8:00 am.  Students arriving late will NOT be admitted.
  • Students should come prepared with pencil/pen, paper, and a positive attitude to participate in the S.A.I.A lessons. Students should bring personal study items and their own device, if available. 
  • Cell phone use is not allowed during S.A.I.A.

Addressing Saturday Academic Intervention Academy:

  • If you have questions about when, where, or how to serve S.A.I.A., speak with Campus Beautification in the Attendance Office before school, nutrition, lunch, & after school.
  • Speak with Campus Beautification regarding S.A.I.A. dates, opportunities to serve early, or opportunities to reschedule.

SART (School Attendance Review Team)

Any student deemed a habitual truant, (having been reported as a truant three or more times per school year) may be required to attend a SART meeting with parents.  This team will analyze the student’s issues and offer suggestions for help. The aim of the SART team’s message is to emphasize the parents’/guardians’ obligation to compel their student’s regular and prompt attendance at school.  If the referral to a SART does not produce satisfactory school attendance, a referral is then forwarded to the SARB.

SARB (School Attendance Review Board)

SARBs are composed of parents, representatives from various youth-serving agencies, school district representatives, and the community. They include representatives from law enforcement; welfare, probation, and mental health agencies; and the district attorney’s office.  When students or parents/guardians continually and willfully fail to respond to SART directives related to school attendance, the SARB ensures that the compulsory education laws are followed.  SARB members direct truant or reluctant students and parents/guardians to use available school and community resources.  It is mandated to refer students and their parents or guardians to the court system when SARB directives are not followed - California Education Code Section 48290.

Truancies Consequence Schedule

Number of Truancies

Consequences & Actions Taken

1 - 2

Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy for each truancy


1. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy

2. Attendance Office notifies parents/ (via telephone and mailed letter)

3. SART Meeting Scheduled & SART Contract Made


1. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy

2. Attendance administration initiates SARB Referral


1. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy

2. SART Contract reviewed with student and parent/guardian

3. SARB Referral process continued with District Attorney Meeting

*Activities/privileges restriction

Students are placed on the Loss of Activities List and are restricted from the following: Parking Passes, Off-Campus Lunch Pass, Campus Dances, Winter Formal, Prom, any contest, nomination, or Graduation Activity.


1. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy for each truancy

2. SARB process continued through SARB hearing


Tardy Consequence Schedule

Number of Tardies

Consequences & Actions Taken

1 - 2

1. Student is warned by teacher

2. Teacher issues detention for each tardy


1. Parents notified by teacher via email or phone call

2. Teacher issues detention for each tardy


1. Teacher issues detention for each tardy

2. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy


1. Teacher issues detention for each tardy

2. Attendance Office conferences with student and notifies parent/guardian of excessive tardies (via telephone and mailed letter)


1. Teacher issues detention for each tardy

2.  Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy

3. Attendance administration holds SART conference with student and parent/guardian

4. SART contract signed by the student


1. Teacher issues detention for each tardy

2. Attendance Office issues Saturday Academic Intervention Academy 

3. SART Contract reviewed with student and parent/guardian

4. SARB referral made after reviewing of SART Contract

Activities/privileges restriction

Students are placed on the Loss of Activities List and are restricted from the following: Parking Passes, Off-Campus Lunch Pass, Campus Dances, Winter Formal, Prom, any contest, nomination, or Graduation Activities.

* 10 Tardies equal 1 SAIA


Attendance Policy Activities Restriction List

Examples of Saturday Academic Intervention Academy Assignments and Steps to Clear Saturday Schools



A student who is assigned a 4-hour Saturday Academic Intervention Academy can clear the S.A.I.A, the following ways:

1 day of assigned S.A.I.A


2 days of Campus Beautification


6 Lunch Detentions in Room 602


10 days of perfect attendance (no absences or tardies) clears 1 S.A.I.A.
After 10 days, each additional 5 days of perfect attendance clears 1 S.A.I.A

Five assigned Saturday Academic Intervention Academy or an accumulation of 20 hours of detention within any one semester

Automatic loss of all activities for the semester with an intervention attendance contract to be decided with the Assistant Principal of Attendance. 


PLEASE KEEP IN MIND:  Students with multiple truancies and tardies who do not attend assigned Saturday Academic Intervention Academy will remain on the Loss of Activities List.  All students must clear all assigned SAIA resulting from tardies and truancies by attending SAIA, participating in Campus Beautification, or attending Lunch Detentions in Room 602 in order to participate in senior activities including but not limited to: Parking Passes, Off-Campus Lunch Pass, Campus Dances, Winter Formal, Prom, any contest, nomination, or Graduation Activities.   

  • SAIA hours do not reset at the start of the year or at the beginning of the second semester.
  • SAIA hours accumulate and carry over from semester to semester and year to year.

At the discretion of the Administrator, students who violate any school policy that results in an out-of-school suspension are subject to a loss of all activities including participation in graduation activities and graduation ceremony.

District Attendance Boundaries


Perfect Attendance is given in a student’s senior year for attending school every day, every period, for all four years.  

Update 5/2021