Chronic absenteeism (missing just 2 days per month or 18 days over the school year) can be an early warning sign of academic trouble starting as early as kindergarten and preschool. Missing too many days can lead to struggling to read proficiently by the end of third grade and dropping out in high school, research shows. At least 6.8 million students, in every state and at every grade level, missed three or more weeks of school in 2013-2014. Why are so many students missing so much school?

Screen Shot 2017-04-18 at 5.19.37 PMChronic absence is often overlooked because educators have traditionally only examined truancy (unexcused absences) and average daily attendance (how many students show up every day).

The good news is that when schools and communities work together to provide a comprehensive, tiered system of supports to students and families—that address the reasons for student absences—they can reduce chronic absence.

Teaching Attendance 2.0 is filled with free, ready-to-use resources for everyone who understands that helping students get to school every day enhances the ability of teachers to teach more effectively.

The links below provide details on how to:

A. Create a welcoming environment that engages students and families

B. Engage families at parent-teacher or student-led conferences

C. Use data to ensure early intervention and secure needed supports

D. Advocate for a school-wide approach

E. Toolkit resources

This toolkit was developed in collaboration with Parent Teacher Home Visits. The Stuart Foundation provided generous support.

Last Update: September 2017