The GRAD Partnership Chronic Absenteeism Toolkit

Chronic absenteeism is at an all-time high; in two-thirds of the nation’s schools, twenty percent or more of students are chronically absent. High quality student success systems extend early warning and MTSS systems by combining whole school prevention efforts with the effective use of holistic data, and family and community engagement to identify why a student is absent and what tailored strategy will address the root cause. A summary of recent studies shows that student success systems have generated positive results for students, and schools and districts, including reductions in chronic absenteeism rates.

The four components of student success systems bring together several key actions which collectively reduce chronic absenteeism. First, they focus on prevention by helping schools establish supportive relationships between students, school staff, and families, and fostering school connectedness among students, all of which have been shown to be powerful means to prevent chronic absenteeism. They then combine actionable holistic data with evidence-based strategic actions co-created with students and families, guided by student centered mindsets, to get the right supports to the right students at the right time to improve attendance. 

Together, these student success system components empower schools and practitioners to both address school-wide attendance patterns and meet individual student needs.

The following are resources for addressing chronic absenteeism in schools:

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