As a parent or guardian, the best way you can get (and keep) students in school is to take an active interest. Talk to your student about their schoolwork, ask about potential issues at school (bullying, a lack of school supplies, medical issues, etc.) and convey the importance of education in their lives. Ask why they’ve been truant or uninterested in school.
You can also take an active role in establishing expectations for attendance, communicating rules consistently and enforcing consequences immediately if your child skips class.
If you're a parent or guardian who’s struggling with getting your child to school or facing challenges with transportation, after school care or other issues that might impact attendance, know that your school wants to help. Reach out to staff, and together you can help your child succeed.
Parents and guardians can also take an active role in establishing expectations for attendance, communicating rules consistently and enforcing consequences immediately if your child skips class.
Other ways to create good habits: establish a carpool, watch them get on the bus in the morning, contact the school office to ensure they arrive and maintain a regular routine. Finally, always look for negative behavior changes like alcohol use, aggression or depression as signals to get help.
Solutions to increasing student attendance are as varied as the students who are missing class time themselves. That said, common themes do emerge on what factors can help students get to class and succeed. They include:
Healthy, safe, and welcoming learning environments.
Family engagement and supportive educators.
A sense of belonging and connection. This can be driven by engagement in learning, enrichment opportunities such as clubs and co-curricular activities, and positive peer connections.
Access to caring adults and appropriate interventions, including where appropriate, health care and mental health supports.
Removal of external barriers, such as transportation, housing insecurity, inability to consistently wash clothes, and childcare needs.
Adapted from Attendance Works.