Health Care Providers

Given the role that physical and mental health plays in contributing to school absences, health providers and school nurses have an important role in ensuring students do not miss school unnecessarily because of acute or chronic illness or lack of access to health care. By showing the connection between health and attendance, school-based and community health providers can make the case for expanding health-related resources and services. Read this handout to learn why health care providers and advocates should care about attendance and what they can do.

Research Summaries

The National Collaborative on Education and Health has created these summaries of research connecting health and chronic absence:


These fliers help parents decide when their children are too sick for school.

School Nurses: The National School Nurses Association created this handout explaining the role they play in addressing chronic absence

  • Grantmakers in Health hosted this webinar to help explain why chronic absenteeism is of interest to health funders, how philanthropy and federal agencies are tackling the issue, and how foundations and corporate giving programs can become involved in driving solutions.

    Chronic Absenteeism: What Are We Missing? (October 11, 2016)

  • Elev8 Baltimore and the Baltimore Student Attendance Campaign collaborated to prepare a preliminary review of absenteeism and school-based health services in Baltimore City. It is a first look into the links between absenteeism and school health from a local, state and national perspective.

    State of Chronic Absenteeism and School Health: A Preliminary Review for the Baltimore Community (April 2012)


California School Health Centers Association produced , Connecting Students to Mental Health Services: Creative Collaborations, Funding, and Evidence-Based Practices, a toolkit that includes a section on how to identify and intervene with chronically absent students.

Children’s Health Fund created, What Can I Do to Improve My Students’ Attendance?, a toolkit for educators with attendance team guidelines and workshop materials.

The Healthy Schools Campaign created Addressing the Health-Related Causes of Chronic Absenteeism: A Toolkit for Action, with includes strategies for developing community and public health partners.

Health and Chronic Absence

These tools present general information about the relationship between poor health and chronic absence.

Specific Health Issues

Here are some in depth resources for addressing specific health issues that present barriers to attendance.

Dental Health
Mental health