• Reporting Student Absences and Late Arrivals



    Please call the attendance line to report your child’s absence or late arrival to school.  There is a voicemail system set up for this purpose. 

    The phone number is (973) 457-2509 (Press "1" for attendance). 

    This is the only official way to report an absence or a late arrival.  Please leave your messages before 8:45 am (or 12:30 pm for afternoon kindergartners).


          The safety and well-being of your children is the responsibility of the school during school hours.  For that reason, we are obligated to call you to verify your child’s whereabouts if you do not report your child’s absence from school.


          If we cannot locate you or your child, the police department will be informed so that they can confirm the safety of your child.


          Please call the attendance line if your child will not be at school or if they will be arriving late.   Since school begins at 8:35 am, parents should place all calls to the absence line prior to 8:45am(Parents of afternoon kindergartners should inform us of absences or late arrivals by 12:30pm)  If you do not report your child’s absence or tardiness, your child's absence is considered "unverified" and our "School Messenger" system will alert you automatically in voice mail and text messages. 

    If you do not inform us by way of our attendance message system, school staff must spend a great deal of time tracking you down.  This could then keep us from reaching a child who may be in danger.  By keeping us informed, you support our efforts to maintain the safety and well-being of all of our students. 



    Frequently asked questions about attendance


    1. If I write a note to my child’s teacher, do I still have to call the attendance line?
    Yes.  Leaving a message on the attendance line is the only official way to report an absence to the school.  Reporting a student's absence to the teacher is nice.  However, the responsibility to officially report absences should never be put on the teacher.  They have more than 20 students to keep track of.  The responsibility to report a child's absence rests with the parents/guardians.  
    1. Can I email the nurse (or my child’s teacher) instead of calling the voicemail number?

    No.  Email is a great way of communicating, but not when it comes to attendance.  If the nurse or teacher has a substitute working for them, these messages would never be received.


    1. What if we are taking a trip in a few months?  Can I call the attendance line in advance?

    Of course, we encourage you to plan your family trips to coincide with school vacations.  But if you must be away, please know that at SBS, absences are recorded in a computer database and can be entered at any time.  You may call the attendance line as soon as you plan your trip.  As a courtesy, please also inform your child’s teacher if you have plans to be away.


    1. How many days per year is my child able to miss?

    According to the State, your child can be absent for 18 days before a formal process is begun to assess their ability to be promoted to the next grade.  After 10 days of absence, you will receive a letter in order to let you know that their absences are getting excessive and to reiterate the state  policy. 


    1. Are there any absences that are considered to be “excused” (i.e., that would not count toward the 18 day maximum)?

    Yes.  If your child must miss school because of religious observances, please state this on your attendance line message.  We will make sure that these absences are not counted in the cumulative total used for report cards and/or the state attendance report.


    1. If my child is late to school, can they just go directly to the classroom?

    No.  Please have your child report to the main office, so their attendance status can be changed from “absent” to “tardy”.  If they are at school, we certainly want to make sure they get credit for being here.  In addition, if your child plans to order lunch, this stop in the main office allows them to be included in their classroom lunch count.