5 Resources to Improve Attendance

Cut back on chronic absenteeism with these informative articles and handouts.

September 2015, Volume 39, Issue 1

With the school year back in full swing, educators are happy to see students back in the classroom. Many kids, however, aren’t in classrooms as often as they should be. Poor student attendance has serious consequences: research shows that by sixth grade, chronic absence is a leading indicator of whether a student will finish high school. Fortunately, NAESP has a wide variety of resources to help principals improve attendance in their schools.

For Leaders

  • “Every School Day Counts” One of the most important strategies in improving attendance is stressing just how important it is for success. This article highlights the problems chronically absent students face, and points to strategies and resources to help them understand that attendance matters.
  • “Put an End to Chronic Absence” There are numerous strategies principals can use to combat absenteeism. Whether its recognizing students for good or improved attendance, or providing personalized outreach, these small changes can add up to a big difference in attendance.
  • “Curbing Chronic Absence in the Early Grades” Attendance issues can be especially pronounced in early grades, with nearly one in 10 kindergarteners and first graders qualifying as chronically absent. Fortunately, it can be diminished with smart use of data, family outreach, and targeted intervention programs.

For Teachers

  • “Improving Teacher Attendance” Ensuring teachers make it to the classroom is just as important as getting students to school. This article explores one school—where teachers’ were averaging 13 absences per year—and how its principal worked with staff to improve attendance.

For Parents

  • “Boost School Attendance” Strong attendance starts at home, which is why this issue of Report to Parents is so useful. It helps families understand why attendance is important, and how to be proactive about missed days. Available in both English and Spanish.

These resources offer a starting point for improving school attendance. Just a few extra days can make a big difference down the line for a child’s future.

Copyright © 2015. National Association of Elementary School Principals. No part of the articles in NAESP magazines, newsletters, or website may be reproduced in any medium without the permission of the National Association of Elementary School Principals. For more information, view NAESP’s reprint policy.