TTUSD continues programs to reduce chronic absenteeism | SierraSun.com

TTUSD continues programs to reduce chronic absenteeism

Special to the Sun

Tahoe Truckee Unified School District is joining the nation in participating in September's Attendance Awareness Month to recognize the connection between school attendance and academic achievement.

The message is a simple one — Every School Day Matters! Attending school regularly is essential for students to gain the academic and social skills they need to be successful, now and in the future.

Absences can quickly add up to academic trouble. Each day missed at school is a lost day of instruction, a day of classroom interaction with students and teachers that cannot be recovered.

Chronic absence, missing 10 percent of the school year or more, does not just affect the students who miss school. It can slow down instruction for other students, who must wait while the teacher repeats material for absent students.

Good attendance helps students do well in school and eventually in the workplace. To ensure success for students, TTUSD has started the school year with a proactive approach toward reducing chronic absence. The district is setting the expectation that families should get their children to school as often as possible and align vacations and appointments with the school calendar to avoid unnecessary absences.

"Too often, we don't realize how quickly absences add up. Missing just two days of school every month can cause a child to fall behind," shared Dr. Robert Leri, Superintendent Chief Learning Officer for TTUSD. "The good news is that chronic absence is a problem we can solve. Our entire community can make a difference by helping students and families understand that going to school every day and avoiding absences whenever possible is critical to success."

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Each school within the district implements a variety of programs to reduce absenteeism and over the past several years, and TTUSD has made significant progress in reducing chronic absenteeism.

The Tahoe Truckee community has been recognized by the National Grade Level Reading Campaign as a Pacesetter Community for those efforts.

While attendance is important, the district wants to keep students healthy, so if a child is ill and contagious, they should stay home to recuperate. Fevers are a sign of illness and an indication when a child should not attend school.

A sample of success from Glenshire Elementary

For the 2015-16 school year, 22 students had perfect attendance, and 308 of their 506 students had five or fewer absences.

Just before school got out, the 22 students from Glenshire Elementary were recognized for not missing one day of school the entire year. They were recognized with a luncheon in their honor and goodie bags consisting of Truckee Bagel gift cards, The Bookshelf certificates, Dairy Queen cones, Glenshire Store gift cards, Glenshire Elementary T-shirts, mugs and CDs.

Our district is very proud of these students and their parents for working so hard to attend school every day: Alexandra Acuff, Scarlett Anderson, Barrett Brown, Anabel Geary, Sawyer Geary, Uriel Gonzalez, Cody Johnson, Jasey Johnson, Keller Jones, Brodie Joslin, Ruth Joslin, Molly Lindeen, Ana McCabe, Christian McCabe, Talon Moore, Bridget Peet, Seth Poulin, Tyler Poulin, Lucas Priemer, Tyson Suh, Ana Zarate and Ivan Zarate-Cortes.

This article was provided by the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. Visit ttusd.org to learn more.