Student & Family Support Services
10 Things a School Can Do To Improve Attendance
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- Make students and parents/guardians feel welcome. Make a point to say “hello” to every parent/guardian or student you see in the halls and outside make it your business to know his or her name.
- Create an environment that enables students to feel successful in something-no matter how small it seems. Award academic and attendance “letters”, as you do for athletics.
- When a student is absent, immediately talk to the parent/guardian-not their answering machine. Make a personal phone call in the evening, or call parents/guardians at work during the day.
- When a student is absent, immediately talk with them about why they were gone-let them know you are aware…and that you care that they are at school.
- Forge a relationship with local businesses where youth may congregate when truant-encourage them to help keep students in school during school hours.
- Forge a relationship with local law enforcement-make them your allies in showing the community, families, and students that school is the place to be. Empower community police officers to return youth to school.
- Don’t provide the temptation for youth to be truant. For example, consider closing your campus during breaks and lunch.
- Empower and expect classroom teachers to take action when they think a student may be truant. Ask teachers to make calls to absent youth or families in the afternoon or evenings.
- Reward and recognize good attendance-not just perfect attendance. Post large signs giving the daily attendance for the day. Reward individuals, classes, teachers, and the school for increased attendance.
- Make your school a place where students feel safe and respected. Adopt Positive Behavior Support Strategies. Involve students in planning and implementing.