Chronic absenteeism among kindergarten students

Essential Question:
What are the effects of kindergarteners' Chronic Absenteeism on academics as they progress through school? And what are some of the obstacles to their attendance?

Schools can not teach students who are not there. Understanding the degree and nature of low attendance among the youngest students, as well as what they have in common, gives us insight into possible ways of mitigating both the absenteeism and its deleterious effects.

Concluding Remarks: RI Kids Count will convene the stakeholders.

RI Kids Count is proud to have been the first Kids Count organization in the nation to publish statewide data, regularly, on Chronic Absenteeism. As it happens, we're also involved with the National Campaign for Grade Level Reading, also deeply engaged in this issue. So we embrace the role of convener for this data story's stakeholders, as they expand and coordinate the strong efforts that have already begun across the state.

Curbing Chronic Absenteeism is a doable project. With the impressive agency and community leaders at the table -- and more who will join in -- a concerted effort could make a significant difference in only a year's time. Tremendous efforts are already underway at the state level, in Providence, Central Falls and other communities. By working together, we can develop a culture of attending school faithfully, ensuring that children can be successful in their lives and as citizens of RI.

Elizabeth Burke-Bryant, Executive Director of Rhode Island Kids Count

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