September is Attendance Awareness Month

School attendance is essential to academic success, but too often parents, students, and sometimes teachers do not realize how quickly absences, excused as well as unexcused, can add up to academic trouble. At the same time principals, division leaders, and community members often do not know if chronic absence is a significant problem in local schools.

Research shows that missing as little as two days every month, or ten percent of the school year is considered chronic absenteeism. Missing school can translate into third-graders unable to master reading, sixth-graders failing courses and ultimately, teens dropping out of high school.

This September will mark the sixth annual Attendance Awareness Month campaign, an opportunity to rally your community, advocates, policymakers, volunteers, funders, and supporters around the importance of attendance and its role in academic achievement. The campaign is spearheaded by Attendance Works , a national and state initiative that promotes better policy and practice around school attendance.