Attendance is Important!

  • Pay Attention to Attendance: Keep Your Child On Track in Middle and High School


    Showing up for school has a huge impact on a student’s academic success starting in kindergarten and continuing through high school.  Even as children grow older and more independent, families play a key role in making sure students get to school safely every day and understand why attendance is so important for success in school and on the job.



    • Students should miss no more than 9 days of school each year to stay engaged, successful and on track to graduation.

    • Absences can be a sign that a student is losing interest in school, struggling with school work, dealing with a bully or facing some other potentially serious difficulty.

    • By 6th grade, absenteeism is one of three signs that a student may drop out of high school.

    • By 9th grade, regular and high attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than 8th grade test scores.

    • Missing 10 percent, or about 18 days, of the school year can drastically affect a student’s academic success.

    • Students can be chronically absent even if they only miss a day or two every few weeks.

    • Attendance is an important life skill that will help your child graduate from college and keep a job.



    Make school attendance a priority

    • Talk about the importance of showing up to school everyday, make that the expectation.

    • Help your child maintain daily routines, such as finishing homework and getting a good night’s sleep.

    • Try not to schedule dental and medical appointments during the school day.

    • Don’t let your child stay home unless truly sick. Complaints of headaches or stomach aches may be signs of anxiety.

    Help your teen stay engaged

    • Find out if your child feels engaged by his classes and feels safe from bullies and other threats.  Make sure he/she is not missing class because of behavioral issues and school discipline policies.  If any of these are problems, work with your school.

    • Stay on top of academic progress and seek help from teachers or tutors if necessary. Make sure teachers know how to contact you.

    • Stay on top of your child’s social contacts. Peer pressure can lead to skipping school, while students without many friends can feel isolated.

    • Encourage meaningful afterschool activities, including sports and clubs.

    Communicate with the school

    • Know the school’s attendance policy – incentives and penalities

    • Talk to teachers if you notice sudden changes in behavior.  These could be tied to something going on at school.

    • Check on your child’s attendance to be sure absences are not piling up.

    • Ask for help from school officials, afterschool programs, other parents or community agencies if you’re having trouble getting your child to school.


    Information from