Attendance
Students should not arrive at school before 7:25 am. Upon arrival, students should either report directly to the cafeteria for breakfast or to their classrooms. If your child arrives after 7:50 am, you must park and come inside with your child. The school day ends at 2:30 pm. 

Absences
In accordance with CHCCS policy, parents must contact the school whenever your child is absent. Your child's absence should be reported to the school before 7:50 am on the SAME day as your child is absent. To report your child's absence, you may call the attendance line at 919-969-2435, extension 62000. 

We want to ensure students are safe. If we do not hear from you by mid-morning on the day of your child’s absence, we will attempt to call you to inquire about your child’s absence. If we are not able to reach you by phone, the school social worker or other designated personnel may attempt to visit you at your home in order to inquire about your child’s absence. 

The NC State Department of Public Instruction allows excused absences for the following reasons:
    • Illness or injury
    • Isolation/Quarantine ordered by the State Board of Health
    • Death in the immediate family
    • Medical/dental appointments
    • Participation under subpoena as a witness in a court proceeding
    • Religious observations
    • Participation in a valid educational opportunity, such as travel where students will be engaged in learning, with prior approval at least two weeks in advance by the principal.

Educational Experiences
We recognize that students may be absent due to travel opportunities or other educational experiences. Parents may request that these absences be excused. Absences may be approved for five days for travel within the US and up to eight days for international travel. Family events such as weddings, reunions, etc. will not be considered excused unless there is an educational component or experience associated with the trip. We recognize that not all family events or vacations may fall under the category of "educational opportunity" and anticipate that some students may have unexcused absences. We do not become overly concerned with these types of absences unless they are excessive in nature. If you believe the experiences in which your child would be involved out of school would qualify as an educational, please complete the following form. (If you have more than one child, you only need to complete one form. Please list all student names). Contact the data manager to see if the absence is excused. If you have questions, please contact Principal McDowell. Thank you!

Additionally, each grade level has prepared a packet of required activities for students to complete while they are away from school. The absence will be considered unexcused until this packet it submitted to the child's teacher. You can find each of those linked below.  
Click here for more information about the CHCCS district attendance policy.



One of our goals at McDougle is to ensure that students attend school regularly and on time. An important part of ensuring regular punctual attendance is sharing information with parents and guardians about our expectations as well as providing them with support. On this page, you can find information about; 

  • Why regular, punctual attendance is important
  • What you can do to ensure your child’s regular, punctual attendance
  • Reporting absences at MES and the CHCCS district’s attendance policy
  • MES Attendance Awards
  • MES Attendance Support for Avoiding Absences and Tardies

Did you know…?

  • We open our doors to welcome students at 7:25 am. Instruction begins promptly at 7:50 each morning. If your child is arriving after 7:50 am, you must park and come inside with your child.
  • One of the most important times for community building in the classroom happens between 7:25-7:50 each morning.
  • There are 180 school days each year. There are 185 days each year when your child does not have the opportunity to attend school. Students are already out of school more days each year than they are in school, so missing school days means missing an already limited number of days in an academic setting! 

Why is regular, punctual attendance important?

  • Every day in school counts.
  • School success goes hand in hand with good attendance.
  • Attending school regularly helps children feel better about school--and themselves. 
  • Good attendance will help children do well in high school, college, and at work.

We realize some absences or late arrivals are unavoidable due to health problems or other circumstances. But, we also know that when students miss too much school— regardless of the reason – it can cause them to fall behind academically.  


Why do absences matter? Research shows...

  • Beginning in Kindergarten, too many absences can cause children to fall behind in school.
  • Absences can affect the whole classroom when a teacher has to slow down learning in order to help other children catch up.
  • Missing 10% (about 18 days) can make it harder to learn to read.
  • Students can still fall behind if they miss just a day or two every few weeks.
  • Being late to school may lead to poor attendance.

Absences can add up quickly.  A child is chronically absent if he or she misses just two days every month!! 

Even as children grow older and more independent, families play a key role in making sure students get to school safely every day and to understand why attendance is so important for success in school and in life. We don’t want your child to fall behind in school and get discouraged.  Please ensure that your child attends school every day and arrives on time.   

What you can do...

  • Make sure your children keep a regular bedtime and establish a morning routine.
  • Lay out clothes and pack backpacks the night before.
  • Ensure your children go to school every day unless they are truly sick.
  • Avoid scheduling vacations or doctor’s appointments when school is in session.
  • Talk to teachers, counselors, or social workers for advice if your children feel 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 child to school.

Attendance Support for Avoiding Absences and Tardies

We want to support you in getting your children to school regularly and on time. We know that you, more than anyone else, want your children to be successful in life, and being successful in school is vital to children’s future success. When students arrive late to school on a frequent basis, or when they miss school often, it hinders their ability to engage in school and to be successful. 

There is a team of support specialists at MES that are available to help ensure students’ regular, on time arrival to school. We invite parents and guardians to reach out to them if they are experiencing a problem that is causing a student to be late to school or to miss school unnecessarily. When we have a concern about a child’s attendance, these support specialists will reach out to support parents and guardians to ensure their children’s full participation in school.