Seattle Public Schools

Requesting Religious Accommodations

Summary: Seattle Public Schools affirms and supports students and staff from all faith backgrounds. Students and staff may request religious accommodations.

Student Requests for Religious Accommodations

Seattle Public Schools affirms and supports our students and staff from all faith backgrounds. As a reminder, students and staff may request religious accommodations if needed.

In order for students to be granted a religious accommodation, the student’s parent or guardian must submit a written request to the principal of the student’s school.

Requests should be submitted in advance to allow the school to make appropriate arrangements and scheduling adjustments. If the request is for an excused absence for a religious event, that request must be made at least three days in advanced of the start of the planned absence in accordance with the district’s Attendance Procedure.

The written request must state: 

  1. The specific accommodation requested; 
  2. Why the accommodation is needed; and 
  3. The amount of time, duration, and frequency of the accommodation. 

Students who are excused from class as a religious accommodation must have an opportunity to make up any work, assignment or test missed as a result of the absence. If the school personnel anticipate denying a request for a religious accommodation for a student, they should consult with the General Counsel’s Office prior to communicating that denial. 

Religious Accommodation Guidance  2023-24

SPS is home to students, families, and staff with a broad range of religious observance. Because of this diversity, not all religious and cultural events can be accommodated. The Guidance Regarding Religion and Religious Accommodations is a reference for our community. 

Religious Accommodations Guidance

Translated guidance:

School leaders and educators should consider which observances might affect student attendance and participation in school events. Central office administrators should consider these dates when scheduling district-wide events and programing.  

State law and the district procedure provides students an excused absence for the observance of a religious or cultural holiday. 

Policy and Procedure Documents

For details, review our 2340SP Religion and Religious Accommodation and 2340 Religious-Related Activities and Practices.

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