THE NATION’S ATTENDANCE CHALLENGE

A Report on Absenteeism in the Nation’s Public Schools

The Importance of Being in School

By: Robert Balfanz and Vaughan Byrnes, May 2012. Chronic Absenteeism: Summarizing What We Know From Nationally Available Data. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Center for Social Organization of Schools. © 2012, The Johns Hopkins University, on behalf of the Center for Social Organization of Schools. All Rights Reserved.

America’s education system is based on the assumption that barring illness or an extraordinary event, students are in class every weekday. So strong is this assumption that it is not even measured. Indeed, it is the rare state education department, school district or principal that can tell you how many students have missed 10 percent or more of the school year or in the previous year missed a month or more school − two common definitions of chronic absence.

The Importance of Being in School
A Report on Absenteeism in the Nation’s Public Schools
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