September 1, 2023

September is Attendance Awareness Month

Attendance Awareness Month, designated by the Attendance Awareness Campaign, returns in September to advocate the message that every day a student is in school is an opportunity to learn, build relationships, and access support.

The theme of 2023’s Attendance Awareness Campaign is “Showing Up Together!“, which speaks to the importance of joining together to address the devastating effects of interrupted learning and increased economic stress.

About the Attendance Awareness Campaign

Through the Attendance Awareness Campaign, schools, localities, and states are urged to promote the value of good attendance and to take concrete steps toward reducing chronic absence.

Regular attendance is vital for student success. When students attend regularly, starting as early as preschool and kindergarten, they have an opportunity to achieve academically and thrive. This year’s campaign focuses on the positive conditions for learning, which have degraded during the pandemic, that can help students and their families to engage and show up for school, especially during challenging moments. There is also an emphasis on students feeling emotionally and physically safe, connected and supported, and instilling belief that students can learn and achieve when attending school.

Research shows that when students are chronically absent (missing 10% or more of the school year or 18 days over an entire year), they are less likely to read proficiently by third grade, achieve in middle school, and graduate from high school.

The Attendance Awareness Campaign suggests considering the following key messages to help improve attendance, connection, and achievement:

  1. Respond to absences with care and support, not blame.

  2. Building trusting relationships that promote belonging is fundamental to improving student attendance and engagement.

  3. Students are more likely to engage in learning and attend school if they feel safe, connected and supported.

  4. A positive, problem-solving approach driven by data will improve attendance.

  5. Supporting the health and well-being of students, families and school staff improves attendance

  6. When the whole community collaborates with families and schools, we can overcome systemic barriers to attendance and engagement..

For more information about how to get involved, attendance resources, messaging, and professional development opportunities, visit the Attendance Works website.

Attendance Awareness Month Campaign Resources

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