New Haven trying to tackle chronic absenteeism in schools

New Haven

New Haven Public Schools are dealing with an epidemic. Too many students are skipping out on school and not showing up to class.

Nearly 20-percent of all students in New Haven Public Schools are chronically absent, which is defined as missing 10-percent of school days or about 2-3 days each month. 4,000 students are chronically absent each year in the Elm City.  

New Haven truancy officers, the superintendent and volunteers went door to door on Tuesday morning talking to families about the importance of kids showing up to school. This is part of a year-long initiative to cut back on chronic absenteeism. 

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“Missing as few as two to three days per month can equate to lower test scores and being held back,” Superintendent, Dr. Carol Birks said. “That can translate into third graders failing to master reading, sixth graders failing courses and ultimately teens dropping out of high school.”

New Haven Public Schools are also partnering with Yale Pediatrics. 10,000 students in New Haven schools see a Yale doctor. 

“Just like pediatricians ask what’s going on in your child’s life, we want them to ask, ‘How many days of school have you missed?'” 

Neighborhood Canvasses will continue the rest of the week. 

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