Good attendance is essential to student achievement and graduation. If children do not attend school regularly, particularly in their younger years, they miss out on fundamental reading and math skills, along with the chance to build a habit of good attendance that will carry with them into college and careers. Nationwide, as many as one out of 10 students is chronically absent, meaning they miss 10 percent or more of school days for any reason, including excused and unexcused absences, or nearly a month of schooling. This translates to about 18 missed days a year or two days every month. Sporadic, not just consecutive, absences matter. Based on research, chronic absenteeism marks the point where students start to fall behind academically. Therefore, we as a district are committed to focusing on reducing chronic absenteeism to give all our students an equitable opportunity to learn, grow and thrive academically, emotionally and socially.
The district has specific policy, regulation and procedures in place to record, monitor and track absences over time. Each child’s school will communicate to parents when absences begin to accumulate. The schools are committed to working with families in these instances to develop strategies for improving attendance to ensure minimal impact on educational programming. See the district’s Student Code of Conduct or Board Policy and Regulation 5200 for more details.
Arriving late to school, tardies, can be disruptive and impact continuity of instruction. In addition, research shows excessive tardiness can lead to poor attendance over time. Therefore, tardies are also recorded and monitored as per policy for any student arriving after the official start time of the school day. These will also be communicated to parents as they accumulate and follow-up will occur as appropriate.
We recognize that some absences are unavoidable. Occasionally children get sick and need to stay home. What is important is getting children to school as often as possible and avoiding any unnecessary absences. Together we can make a difference!
Some Attendance Tips to Promote Student Learning:
- Make sure your child keeps a regular bedtime and establish a morning routine so they are rested and alert when they get to school.
- Turn off all electronics including TVs, phones and tablets at bedtime.
- Pack backpacks and make sure clothes are ready the night before.
- Check with school nurse if you are not sure about when to keep your child at home due to illness.
- Avoid scheduling vacations or doctor’s appointments when school is in session.
- Talk to your child’s teacher and school counselor for advice if your child feels anxious about going to school.
- Develop back up plans for getting to school if something comes up or the bus is missed. Call on a family member, neighbor, or another parent to take your child to school, if needed.
Additional Attendance Resources: