Skip to content

New Research Shows Proactive, Positive Attendance Management Strategies Triple Improvement Rates for Chronically Absent K-12 Students

SchoolStatus, a leader in K-12 data-driven solutions that empower student success, released its National K-12 Attendance Data Trends report that examines the attendance trends of nearly one million K-12 students.

These districts implemented proactive, positive attendance management strategies and tools over three consecutive school years (2021-22, 2022-23, and 2023-2024). This analysis examines chronic absenteeism rates and attendance rates across district size, grade levels, and student ethnicities and compares the SchoolStatus dataset to publically reported national attendance data. The findings show that districts implementing proactive, consistent attendance interventions saw a 22% improvement in chronic absenteeism rates from 2021-22 to 2022-23 versus only 7% improvement nationally over that same timeframe.

SchoolStatus provides districts with a comprehensive, equity-based attendance approach emphasizing universal prevention and engagement, early warning systems, targeted outreach, and intensive support and service coordination, rather than traditional punitive methods. Districts that use the SchoolStatus Attend product see significant improvement over the national average every year.

Key Takeaways:

High School Students and Larger Districts Show High Chronic Absenteeism Rates

  • In 2023-24, chronic absenteeism rates were highest among high school students at 27.74% for 9th graders, escalating to 31.84% of 12th graders
  • Chronic absenteeism was lowest in the early elementary grades, with a rate of 26% in kindergarten, and dropping to 16.5% by 3rd grade
  • Smaller districts (3,500> students) improved chronic absenteeism rates by 36.39% between the 2021-22 to 2023-24 school years
  • Large districts (20,000+ students) show just 19.63% improvement for the same time period

Chronic Absenteeism Continues to Impact Historically Marginalized Students

  • In 2023-24, students identifying as Black (30.1%), Hispanic/Latinx (25.72%), Native American (32.84%), and Pacific Islander (32.47%) had chronic absenteeism rates of 25% or higher
  • Asian students had the lowest chronic absenteeism rate at 10.49%; while white students had a chronic absenteeism rate of 18.36%
  • Hispanic students’ chronic absenteeism rate improved by 16.7%, double the 7% national improvement rate

“Attendance is critical across all grade levels and we’re continuing to see alarming rates of chronic absenteeism in U.S. schools year over year,” said Russ Davis, Founder and CEO of SchoolStatus. “Many districts use outdated techniques that focus on punishment rather than positive reinforcement. We have seen time and time again why those methods don’t work. By connecting with families to understand why their student is missing school and creating an encouraging school environment with open communication, we can get students back into the classroom.”

Source: PR Newswire