Every Student, Every Day: Reducing Chronic Absenteeism What Afterschool Leaders Need to Know to Be Part of the Solution

This is a recorded Afterschool Alliance Webinar, with featured speaker Robert Balfanz, Director of the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University

What can networks do to position afterschool as part of the community solution for chronic absenteeism?

A growing and compelling body of research demonstrates that chronic absence from school—typically defined as missing at least 10 percent of school days in a year for any reason, excused or unexcused—is a primary cause of low academic achievement and a powerful predictor of which students will eventually drop out of school.  With an estimated five to seven and a half million students chronically absent each year, chronic absenteeism is a national problem that seriously undermines our collective efforts to improve education and life outcomes among our youth.

We know – from both research and practice – that afterschool programs can effectively engage youth in learning and mitigate other factors that contribute to chronic absence from school.  For example, the Family League of Baltimore reports, “students who attend afterschool programs for at least two years have higher school attendance rates and are less likely to be chronically absent.”

Last Fall, the U.S. Department released a new resource, Every Student, Every Day: A Community Toolkit to Address and Eliminate Chronic Absenteeism. More on this issue is expected soon.

Webinar materials include:

  • Webinar PowerPoint Slides from Dr. Balfanz.
  • Toolkit for Networks to discuss and begin to address chronic absence, with facts and figures on chronic absence, evidence of afterschool success in fighting the causes of chronic absence, steps Networks can take to address chronic absence, resources and sample social media posts.
  • PowerPoint slides from the MOST and Pennsylvania Afterschool Network’s 2012 Presentation with Attendance Matters.
  • Hedy Chang and Phyllis Jordan’s article “Building a Culture of Attendance: Schools and Afterschool Programs Together Can and Should Make a Difference” from the Expanding Minds and Opportunities compendium.
Which Standards does this meet? V. Family, School and Community Engagement, VI. Program Management, VII. Program Evaluation and Data
Author/Developer: Afterschool Alliance
URL: Learn More / Download Resource