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Public school districts in California receive their funding from the state of California based on the actual number of students who are present for classes, not on the district’s enrollment. Districts are not paid for students who are absent, no matter whether an absence is excused or unexcused. Capistrano Unified urges parents to make sure their children attend school regularly and to schedule medical and other appointments so that a student misses none, or only a small portion, of the school day. The district also asks that travel or other absences be avoided during the time school is in session. The better a student’s attendance rate, the more a student will learn and the greater the amount of funding that the district will receive from the state for classroom instruction and academic programs.

The school calendar is designed to minimize problems for families who plan vacations around traditional holiday periods, and thereby minimize student absences.

Following an absence, a student is required to bring a written excuse from home when returning to school, or the school must have received a phone call from a parent/guardian. Illnesses and doctor and dental appointments are considered excused absences. Children should not be sent to school when they are not feeling well. Absences without a written excuse or phone call from home are recorded as unexcused. (Please see section on truancies.)