Attendance

Give your child the gift of attendance!
This holiday season, the best gift you can give your child is a good education. And the best place to get that education is in school. Every day. On time.

Every year, absences spike in the weeks before and after winter break. It’s time to break that cycle. We know it’s tempting to extend your vacation by a few days on either side of the holiday. We recognize that holidays are an important time for reconnecting with families far away and exposing your children to your home and language, whether you grew up in another part of the United States or a different country. The costs of plane tickets often influence when you want to travel. But keep in mind the costs to your children’s education if they miss too much school.

Just a few missed days here and there, even if they’re excused absences, can add up to too much lost learning time and put your child behind in school. This is as true in kindergarten as it is in high school.

So make sure your child is in school every day, right up until vacation starts. Our teachers will be teaching, and our students will be learning. But it’s harder to teach and it’s harder to learn when too many students are absent.

If missing school is unavoidable, talk to your children’s teachers in advance to create a plan for making up missed work. But remember, a homework packet cannot make up for the interaction and learning that goes on in the classroom. So give your child the gift of attendance and help build a habit of attendance.
School Attendance

Attendance every day is a priority for our schools!

The winter months are upon us and the darker days can make it hard for your teen to want to get up and go to school. Please make school attendance a priority for your teen.

Here are some ways you can stay on top of your child’s attendance:
- Know your child's school attendance policy- incentives and penalties
- Talk to your child’s teachers if you notice sudden changes in behavior. These could be tied to something going on at school.
- Check your child’s attendance in Skyward Family Access 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.

It’s never too early to start good school attendance habits!

Preschool is a great time to start building a habit of good attendance. Young children with poor attendance in preschool also lose out on valuable learning time and if chronic absence continues into kindergarten, it can pull down academic achievement. Attendance matters as early as kindergarten. Studies show many children who miss too many days in kindergarten and first grade can struggle academically in later years. They often have trouble mastering reading by the end of third grade. Please make sure your child attends school each day!
Good Attendance

Help your teen be ready to attend school each day
As parents and guardians, there are things you can do to help your teenage be ready to attend school each day. You can help them develop homework and bedtime routines that allow for 8 to 10 hours of sleep. Make sure that when the lights go out, so do the cell phones, video games and computers.

You can set an example for your child. Show him or her that attendance matters to you and that you won’t allow an absence unless someone is truly sick. Avoid asking older students to help with daycare and household errands. For more information go to: http://awareness.attendanceworks.org/
Absenteerism

Good attendance will help your child do well in school!

Did you know? Your child can suffer academically if they miss 10 percent of the school year or about 18 days. That can be just one day every two weeks, and that can happen before you know it. Some absences are unavoidable. We understand that children will get sick and need to stay home occasionally. The important thing is to get your child to school as often as possible, on time and to communicate with the school when your child will be absent.
Absences

September is Attendance Awareness Month

Students miss school for many reasons including illness, lack of transportation, work, homelessness, and family responsibilities. Families understand the importance of education, however, they may not realize how quickly absences from school can add up. Schools, families, and communities can work together to improve attendance and support the needs of families and students.

Why Attendance is so importantWhen do absences become a problem?
Attendance is a major focus for Arlington Public Schools. According to the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), every absence, excused or unexcused, is a learning opportunity lost and can have significant impacts on a student’s success in school and life. A student who misses 10% or more of their school days, which amounts to 18 or more days in a school year—or just two days a month—for any reason is considered chronically absent. Chronically absent students are more likely to fall behind in reading and math and less likely to graduate from high school. Addressing chronic absenteeism and developing good attendance habits is a solvable problem for which we all share responsibility.

Infographic

Additional Resources

Pre-Arranged Absences

Every Day Matters (Video)

The Importance of School Attendance (Video)

Attendance Rap Video

Attendance and Chronic Absenteeism (OSPI)