Reports about the damaging effects of poor school attendance in early childhood education, particularly kindergarten, have been in the news lately. Whenever that happens, lists of solutions soon follow. I am concerned that most of these solutions are focused on the superficial symptoms rather than on the root causes. If we really want to turn this around, we need to promote long-lasting solutions that address the causes of absenteeism. Try these:
Getting the school community and the neighborhoods involved in attendance improvement efforts should be a rallying call for supports for all families. The ones who need the most help may be the hardest to find or the last to ask. When a community comes together to raise up the struggling families, the whole community benefits.