April 19, 2024

4 Strategies For an All Hands on Deck Approach to Attendance Improvement

Poor attendance is a major hurdle to student success nationwide. But without every team member committed to improving attendance, getting more students back in class can be especially challenging. How can you engage an already thinly stretched team in attendance improvement? In this post, we’ll explore four ways to inspire educators across your entire district to feel invested in attendance improvement. From strategic partnerships to more accessible ways to leverage data, getting everyone on board with better attendance just got a little bit easier. 

1. Liberate Teams from Administrative Work 

Families view teachers as some of the most trusted figures at their school, making them ideally positioned to have meaningful conversations around attendance. However, adding more administrative and communications work will likely not be well received by teachers nor other school-based staff. 

Don’t let this happen to you!

The right attendance solution can take away the administrative burden of tracking absences, as well as creating, texting, printing, and mailing attendance communications. Additionally, it can provide the essential data and insights needed to inform the right strategic supports and get ahead of more severe challenges. This frees school-based teams to focus on the spaces where they’ll have the most impact: building trusting relationships with students and families.

2. Make it Easy to Act on Data Instead of Drown in It

With the right tools, practitioners can transform into attendance wizards. While there’s no shortage of data in today’s modern world, having the right details at the district, school, and student level is essential to implementing strategic campaigns. A dashboard that automatically provides this information in real time and surfaces attendance patterns and trends makes taking well-informed action much easier.   

Attendance work can feel overwhelming when there are so many students to support and so little time. Tools that make it easy to group students who may need similar support as well as space to clearly communicate ongoing work to other team members, make these difficult initiatives more streamlined and efficient. 

3.  Make It a School-Wide Effort   

Attendance improvement shouldn’t fall on just one person or role, but instead should be an internalized priority for every team member. After all, students can’t benefit from the talents and investments of the entire team when they aren’t in school in the first place. 

An attendance task force can not only bring this important priority into focus, but also nurture collaboration across various teams. Include representatives from different departments to brainstorm solutions, share best practices, and celebrate successes together. 

While not all teachers have time to be part of an attendance committee, make sure they’re looped in on the fun initiatives underway so that they can build excitement during class. A healthy amount of FOMO can help motivate students to keep up their attendance and join in on the celebrations that their educators have planned for them.  

Leading attendance work doesn’t have to be limited to staff members: our partners at Semitropic have a committee led by five 8th grade girls with varying attendance habits who take the lead in encouraging positive attendance habits.  Bringing in student voices and getting students motivated to attend every day can be a fantastic way to build a culture of attendance.  

4.  Celebrate!

Attendance work isn’t without its challenges and frustrations. But when you focus on the positive, you’ll find there’s plenty to celebrate! Recognize the classrooms and their teachers with high and/or improved attendance rates. Highlight success stories of students returning from extended absences and turning their attendance around. Celebrating wins will uplift your school climate with the ebullience that makes every school community member, staff or student, excited to be at school every day. 

Ready to take a profound first step towards better attendance driven by highly engaged teams? We can help! 

Getting students on track starts with attendance. We can help.