The Spring Slide: What is it? Why does it matter?
We’ve all been there. Lovely spring finally emerges after a long, dark winter; the weather gets nicer and it feels harder and harder to motivate students to show up to school. The Spring Slide is here. Spring Slide refers to what we all feel fairly intuitively: a decrease in student attendance in the spring semester.
According to TASC1, 25% of students are more likely to miss school in the spring, rather than the fall.
- 17% of those students reported that “nothing really happens in class during the last few weeks of school.”
- 3% of those students said they don’t go because they want to hang out with their friends outside of school
There are many factors that contribute to the Spring Slide, some are listed below:
- Having final showcase events like Graduation or Prom too early
- Post Testing Mindsets
- Spring Weather (warmer + more allergies)
- Field Trip Policies
- Early Vacations
- No after school care
All of the above factors can sometimes make it challenging for families to remain motivated to keep up the hard work of supporting their students in showing up for school, every single day.
Why do we need to be concerned about the Spring Slide?
New research from Jing Liu, Monica Lee, and Seth Gershenson2 shows that while all absences matter, spring absences are more harmful than fall absences because of the increased rigor in those spring lessons. Building and expanding upon the groundwork done in the fall, missed lessons in the spring means losing more substantial learning opportunities. As digging into unfinished learning has been a particular focus this year, we want to maximize as many learning opportunities as much as possible.
How can we beat it?
Stay tuned for more tips on how to counteract the impact of the Spring Slide on your students!
To learn more about professional learning series to help mitigate the Spring Slide, reach out to an EveryDay Labs attendance expert!
2 Liu, Jing and Lee, Monica and Gershenson, Seth, The Short- and Long-Run Impacts of Secondary School Absences. IZA Discussion Paper No. 12613, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3457657 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3457657