Attendance Department

  • The Chelsea Public Schools Attendance Department works with students and families to reduce absenteeism and increase educational outcomes.  The department’s mission is to ensure that all students attend school every day.  The work of the department is governed by State law and Chelsea Public Schools policy.  The Supervisor of Attendance and Attendance Officer serve over 6,600 students and their families, including students who attend school out of district.   

    The Supervisor of Attendance will ensure compliance with compulsory school attendance and residency laws Chapter 71, 72, 76, 101, 119, 149, 766 and 1073. The Attendance Department provides support and recommendations to all district administrators, support staff, parents and students district wide.  

    What Parents Should Know

    • Starting at age 6, minors are required to attend school in the state of Massachusetts. 
    • A child is considered habitually truant when absences exceed 8 school days in a quarter. 
    • Parents/guardians will receive notification each day that a child is absent, either from the child’s school or via the electronic system. (It is important that families make sure that their contact information and address are current so that calls, texts, and mail go to the correct person.  Please contact the school or Parent Information Center with updates to phone numbers or addresses.)
    • Parents/guardians are responsible for notifying the school when their child will be absent.  
    • School engagement teams will problem-solve with students and families when absences become a concern.  
    • Failure to resolve truancy, chronic tardiness, and/or absenteeism could result in the filing of a court action and/or referral to the state Department of Children and Families.

    Transition to Alternative Educational Opportunities

    Alternative educational opportunities exist for students age 16 and higher and can be explored with your school counselor.  These can include Chelsea’s Intergenerational Literacy Program, transfer to alternative education programs such as Youth Build, LARE, and other Hi-Set programs.  Contact the Attendance Department for more information about options.

    District Guidelines

    CPS parents and guardians are encouraged to review school-specific handbooks for attendance policies and procedures:

    Massachusetts General Law & Additional Resources

    Reports of unresolved truancy, chronic tardiness and/or absenteeism or habitual truancy may result in the filing of one or more of the following with the Suffolk County Juvenile Court: (a) “ child requiring assistance” (CRA) Petition (Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 119, sec. 21); (b) a Failure to Cause Complaint (Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 76, sec. 2); (c) an Inducing Absenteeism of a Minor, Complaint (Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 76, sec. 4) or (d) a 51A for educational neglect with the Department of Children and Families.

    Attendance impacts educational outcomes as well as employment and financial trajectories. To learn more on this topic and view relevant research studies, visit

     Vision:  All Chelsea Public School students will graduate!

    Phillip Carangelo, Supervisor of Attendance 

    Chelsea Public Schools
    299 Everett Avenue
    Chelsea, MA 02150

    Phone: 617-466-5043
    Fax: 617-889-8468


    Tiffany Zuniga, Attendance Officer K-8

    Chelsea Public Schools
    77 Webster Ave 
    Chelsea, MA 02150

    Phone: 617-466-5123
    Bilingual English/Spanish