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School Attendance Predicts Your Child's Future

 Missing School = Missing Out
Missing School = Missing Out
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The Governor’s Office of Student Achievement shows that school attendance is a serious concern in Georgia and Coffee County. For the 2013-14 school year, 39% of students in Georgia missed 6 or more days of school. In Coffee County, 47% of students missed 6 or more days of school. School attendance is a strong predictor of school success or failure. As children grow older and more independent, families play a major role in making sure students understand why attendance is so important for success in school and on the job.

Data indicate that missing more than five days of school each year, regardless of the cause, begins to impact student academic performance and starts shaping attitudes about school. Chronically truant students are not the only students negatively impacted by absences. For students in the 6th grade through the 9th grade, student attendance is a better predictor of dropping out of school than test scores. This predictor is not limited to chronically truant 
students. Excused absences and unexcused absences have similar impact on student academic performance.

Each year our schools get a report card from the Department of Education. This report card is now referred to as the College and Career Readiness Performance Index or CCRPI. This report 
card tracks the number of student absences. The schools are penalized for the number of days (excused and unexcused) over five that a student is not present. This means, if your child misses
more than five days in one school year, the rating/points on the CCRPI Report decreases for your child’s school. Parents, please ensure that your child comes to school and does not miss more than five days per year.

Some ways that parents can help ensure their children have good attendance:

• Set a regular bed time and morning routine.
• Lay out clothes and pack backpacks the night before.
• Don’t let your child stay home unless he/she is truly sick. Keep in mind complaints of stomach ache or headache can be a sign or anxiety and not a reason to stay home.
• If your child seems anxious about school, talk to teachers, school counselors, or other parents for advice on how to make him/her feel comfortable and excited about learning.
• Avoid extended trips when school is in session.
• Avoid medical and dental appointments during the school day. Most offices are able to schedule appointments after school hours.
• Register your child to use the Telehealth Program at your child’s school.

Coffee County Schools houses one of the most robust Telehealth Programs in Georgia. With this program conveniently being located at every school in Coffee County, parents can complete the necessary paperwork so their child may have the option to see a physician though Telehealth while at school. The school nurse, with the parent’s permission, will schedule an appointment with the physician via webcast. This program helps alleviate travel and waiting in a doctor’s office. It also allows the child to stay at school so he/she is not counted absent. For more information about enrolling your child in this program speak to the nurse at your child’s school or look on the Coffee County Schools website.

Hospital Homebound services are also available for students with long term illnesses. For more information, contact the Coffee County Schools Special Services Department.

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