Project Leader, Attendance Innovation Campaign – We often talk about the importance of regular school attendance and how it impacts the development of academic, language, social, and work related skills in children. The research clearly shows that students who miss two days each month are placed at significant risk for current and future challenges at school. Despite knowing the impact that school absences can have, we often do not address a root cause for why many students are not in school – vacations.
Vacations offer unique learning and relationship building opportunities for children, and very few educators or school administrators would ever downplay their value. Issues arise, however, when vacations are extended into, or implemented during, the school year. Unlike many vacations, schools offer a structured setting for academic development, language-rich environment, opportunities to develop social competencies, and experiences that nurture work-related skills such as persistence, resiliency, problem-solving, and the ability to work with others to accomplish goals.
There are approximately 180 instructional days in one school year and teachers have a large amount of curriculum content to cover within that timeframe. Given teachers share their knowledge and passion for learning on a daily basis, students who miss school because of vacations are placed at a relative deficit for lost instructional time and valuable learning opportunities. Many parents have the perception that their child can easily catch up on missed work and it can be the case for some. Unfortunately, the research demonstrates that many students who miss this instructional time will not catch up.
If parents intend to take their children away on vacation during the school year, we ask that they consider the impact it can have on their child’s learning and take steps to minimize it. By limiting the amount of time that is taken away from instruction, parents set their children up for success in the future. For more information on how parents can help improve the attendance of their children, please visit:
Project Lead, Attendance Innovation Campaign – Attending school on a regular basis is important for the positive development of academic, language, social, and work-related skills in children. Schools offer a structured setting for academic development, language rich environment, opportunities to develop social competencies, and experiences that nurture skills such as persistence, resiliency, problem-solving, and the ability to work with others to accomplish goals.
It is well-known that students who attend school on a regular basis, missing five or fewer days over the year, score higher on standardized and school-level assessments of achievement. These students often graduate from high school and are much more likely to become employed following the completion of school. However, despite the positive incentives for maintaining regular school attendance, thousands of students across Alberta demonstrate problematic levels of school absenteeism and tardiness.
There are approximately 180 instructional days in one school year and teachers have a large amount of curriculum content to cover within that timeframe. Given teachers share their knowledge and passion for learning on a daily basis, students who miss or are late for school are placed at a relative deficit for lost instructional time and valuable learning opportunities. According to the research, students who miss 10 percent of instructional days are placed at significant risk for academic and social challenges. This means, regardless of the reason for absence, students who miss 18 days over the year will likely be off-track in their learning. Thankfully, there are many ways in which absences can be combatted by families, schools and communities. If you need help getting your children to school, are an educator or administrator who needs help working with students who miss school, or a community leader who values the role of school attendance in fostering successful citizens, please check out the following links for useful tips.
Resources for: Parents of Preschool Students ; Parents of Elementary Students ; Parents of Middle or High School Students ; Teachers ; Administrators ; City Leaders