Embrace the Every Day

The Appleton Area School District believes there is a positive relationship between school attendance and student success. It further believes that school attendance is a responsibility shared by students, parents, schools, and community. 

School attendance, all day, every day, is incredibly impactful on students’ academic success starting in preschool and continuing through high school. Even as your students grow older and more independent, our families play a key role in making sure students get to school safely every day and understanding why attendance is so important for success in school and in life.

We realize some absences are unavoidable due to health problems or other circumstances. However, we also know that when students miss too much school— regardless of the reason – it can cause them to fall behind academically. Your student is less likely to succeed if he or she is chronically absent—which means missing 18 or more days over the course of an entire school year. Research shows:

  • Students chronically absent in preschool through 1st grade are much less likely to read at grade level by the end of 3rd grade. 
  • By 6th grade, chronic absence is a proven early warning sign for students at risk of dropping out of school.
  • By 9th grade, good attendance can predict graduation rates even better than 8th-grade test scores.

Absences can add up quickly. A student is chronically absent if he or she misses just two days every month! The academic impact of missing that much school is the same whether the absences are excused or unexcused.
We don’t want your student to fall behind in school and get discouraged. Please ensure that your student attends school every day and arrives on time.

Here are a few practical tips to help support regular attendance:

  • Make sure your student keeps a regular bedtime and establishes a morning routine.
  • Lay out clothes and pack backpacks the night before.
  • Ensure your student goes to school every day unless they do not feel well.
  • Avoid scheduling vacations when school is in session. Families are encouraged to take vacations during the eight weeks of summer vacation, two weeks near the holidays, or over spring break.
  • Try to schedule regular doctor and dentist appointments at the beginning or end of the day or days students are off of school so that your student will only miss a portion of the day.
  • Talk to teachers and counselors for advice if your student feels anxious about going to school.
  • Develop backup plans for getting to school if something comes up. Call on a family member, neighbor, or another parent to take your student to school.
  • Monitor your student's attendance through Infinite Campus to keep track of absences. If an absence is marked unexcused, please contact the school as soon as possible.
  • Reach out for help if you are experiencing tough times (e.g. transportation, unstable housing, loss of a job, health problems) that make it difficult to get your child to school. We are here to help! Other parents, your child’s teacher, principal, social worker, school nurse, after-school providers, or community agencies can help you problem solve or connect you to a needed resource.

If your child is absent, work with the teacher to make sure she or he has an opportunity to learn and make up for the academics missed.

Attendance Communication
The AASD has four letters that are used to communicate with families when a student’s attendance reaches a level of concern.

Two letters related to Unexcused Absences: 

  • THREE Unexcused Absences – All families will receive this letter electronically once their student reaches three unexcused absences.
  • FIVE Unexcused Absences – Families may receive this letter as determined by the school site’s attendance team once their student reaches five unexcused absences.  A student is considered habitually truant if they are absent from school without an excuse for part or all of five or more days on which school is held during a semester.

Two letters related to Excused Absences: 

  • SEVEN Excused Absences – All families will receive this letter electronically once their student reaches seven excused absences.
  • TEN Excused Absences – Families may receive this letter as determined by the school site’s attendance team once their student reaches ten excused absences. A student may be excused by a parent/guardian for not more than 10 days in the school year (the 10 days includes absences due to intermittent illness).

An unexcused absence is an absence from school without an excuse provided by the parent/guardian. For an absence to be excused a parent/guardian must contact the school. It is best to do this as soon as it is known that the student will be absent. Students should remain home if they are displaying signs of illness such as fever, vomiting, or diarrhea. Learn more about determining if your child is well enough to attend school here.

Absence Request Process

It’s very important that you notify the school when your child will be absent. This can be done by phone call, email, or parents/guardians can use the Absence Request found on Campus Parent/Parent Portal tool to submit a request that informs the office in advance when their student is not going to be in school.

This new feature can be used as an alternative to the traditional phone calls to the school office. Please see the instructions, found here, on how to submit an Absence Request via the Campus Portal.


Request for Student Absence - English
Request for Student Absence - Hmong
Request for Student Absence - Spanish

Chronic Medical Condition Absence Form - English
Chronic Medical Condition Absence Form - Hmong
Chronic Medical Condition Absence Form - Spanish

Health Guidance for Going to School
Orientación de salud para ir a la Escuela