Solving Chronic Absence:

Information and resources for educators and community coalitions

Actions Needed to Solve Chronic Absence

Steps to Reduce Chronic Absence

Key Concepts

The actions needed for us to solve chronic absence are best achieved using a prevention-oriented tiered approach.

The actions require us to:

  1. Build awareness
  2. Use data to inform action
  3. Engage students and families and recognize their successes
  4. Intervene early and provide supports

Many schools already use a prevention approach to provide supports to students with academic or behavioral challenges.

The infrastructure used to address these challenges (e.g., Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supportsā€”PBIS) can also be used to tackle chronic absence.

However, the tiered approach for reducing chronic absence differs somewhat from what schools are doing now in that:

  • Attendance becomes a more visible priority;
  • Efforts to address attendance problems are more focused, deliberate and ongoing; and
  • Attendance becomes a criterion (in addition to academics and behavior) for identifying children who need additional supports.