Early Attendance Gaps Often Lead to Achievement Gaps
Poor attendance habits are often established early on, contributing to later achievement gaps, truancy, and even dropping out, according to a new Attendance Works report. Researchers estimate that 5 million to 7.5 million students -- including 10 percent of kindergartners and first graders -- are missing nearly a month of the school year, and their grades suffer for it. The authors note that early absenteeism is often due to legitimate health reasons, such as asthma or dental problems. Still, these children miss out on critical learning opportunities, creating a "gap" that may widen as they age.