Cardigan Mountain School A boarding and day school for boys in grades 6 through 9

Absence Policy

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic and in order to prioritize the health and safety of our entire community, we will require boarding students to remain on campus from their arrival date during the week of August 24, 2020 through the beginning of break on November 15, 2020.

We will continue to monitor any developments around the pandemic and will adjustment our program and policy in the best interests of our community. Should a boarding student have an extenuating family circumstance that requires departing campus, that student will need to obtain permission from Head of School Chris Day and Director of Health Services Karen Gray. With improving circumstances regarding the pandemic, we will transition to our regular absence policy (outlined below) when appropriate.


Regular Absence Policy

As an educational institution, Cardigan Mountain School offers a comprehensive program that best serves those boys and their families willing to participate fully in all facets of school life--academic, athletic, and residential. The School takes attendance seriously and requires parents to provide information regarding absences, tardiness, and early departures. The School does not grant extended absence or early departure from school. The School realizes that situations arise in which students will need to miss school days for illness, family emergencies, or other pressing family commitments, and the Student Life Office will sanction absences when appropriate, not counting against a student’s attendance record. In order to minimize the impact of absences on a student’s progress, the School has established the following policies:

  • In the case of any absence, early departure, or late return from break, it is the responsibility of the student and his family to contact the travel coordinator and director of student life in advance by emailing attendance@cardigan.org. Parents must provide evidence of absence, tardiness, or early departure.
  • For legitimate reasons, students will be allowed to miss up to five (5) days of school. These excused absences include academic, athletic, or residential commitments. This is above and beyond absences for illness or injury and the scheduled school visit days for ninth graders (see Secondary School Visits section). As determined by the School, absences that are not for legitimate reasons or violate Cardigan policy will be considered unexcused.
  • Unless sanctioned, any absences above the five excused will be considered unexcused at the discretion of the director of student life. Students who accrue an unexcused absence will receive consequences as determined by the dean of students and director of student life and the student will receive no credit for missed classwork (assessments, projects, labs). Students who receive more than three (3) unexcused absences put their enrollment or academic eligibility in jeopardy.
  • It is the responsibility of the student to obtain (in advance) and complete any academic work missed during an absence.
  • Per the athletic section of the student handbook, and our school philosophy on healthy adolescent/athletic development and commitment to team, Cardigan boys are required to attend all school practices and competitions and are discouraged from missing any school commitments to try out or compete in or for any type of outside tournament or club team.
  • Chronic tardiness will result in a consequence as determined by the dean of students and the director of student life and may put a student’s academic eligibility in jeopardy.

Scheduled Vacations

When departing campus for scheduled breaks, all students are required to check out by calling the AOD phone if they are traveling by car or taxi. Those traveling by school transportation will be automatically checked out. Upon return, students must check in with their dorm parent.

Throughout the course of the year, Cardigan provides for substantial vacation time. As such, the School believes that students should meet all of their community responsibilities before departing for scheduled breaks. Consequently, students are required to attend all commitments prior to vacations, including sports awards and recognition assemblies. Following vacations, students must return to Cardigan on the appointed day. 

Secondary School Interviews 

Covid-19 precautions on campuses across North America have restricted secondary schools’ ability to welcome prospective families to their campuses for traditional visits and interviews. With the combination of Cardigan’s campus policies, the 2020-2021 academic year calendar, and the above in mind, the secondary school counseling team does not anticipate the need for scheduled absences for school visits.

Online interviews with secondary school admission offices, as outlined by each specific school, are recommended to be scheduled during the Break/Distance Learning time period between November 15 and January 3. Please keep in mind that these schools will have their own vacations surrounding major US holidays, so the following dates are recommended:

  • November 16-20
  • November 30-December 5
  • December 7-December 12
  • December 14-December 19

Dates and times for interviews should be shared with the director of secondary school counseling in advance. Students will be expected to communicate with their teachers in advance of any missed academic commitments during the Distance Learning period.

If revisits for admitted students are permitted this spring, Cardigan will sanction a maximum of two school days for ninth graders to revisit secondary schools. 

*Note: Students must secure permission from Head of School Chris Day and our Director of Health Services Karen Gray, with confirmation by the director of secondary school counseling, if they wish to depart campus for any reason related to secondary school applications (other than those directly associated with Cardigan programming) during the academic year.