Strategy 3: Recognize Improvements
One strategy for improving attendance is engaging students, parents, educators and community members in offering positive recognition or incentives for getting to school on time. Incentives are not meant to be bribes but rather are a positive way to help students internalize the value of showing up every day. As this guidance offered by the national Positive Behavioral and Intervention Supports (PBIS) center reveals, thoughtfully designed incentives are an effective and proven approach to promoting positive behaviors like showing up to class every day. Incentives also don’t need to be costly. Simple things—recognition from peers and the school through certificates or assemblies, extra recess time, homework passes or even dancing in the hallways—go a long way toward motivating students.
If you already have a system of recognizing appropriate social and academic behaviors, don’t create something new. Just make sure to build in attention to attendance.