Posted on June 9, 2023
Categories: Research and Evaluation

Attendance is important for positive educational outcomes. Research has found that high attendance is associated with reading at or above a student’s grade level, scoring at or above grade level in math, and being prepared for college and career. In contrast, high absenteeism is linked to lower academic achievement in math and reading, and higher dropout rates.

This brief uses attendance data across all students enrolled in District schools, including alternative programs, to identify trends in student attendance from 2017-18 to 2021-22.

Key findings include:

  • The percentage of District students attending 90% or more instructional days increased from 2017-18 to 2019-20, whereas 90%+ attendance rates dropped by 18% from 2019-20 to 2021-22.
  • Between 2017-18 to 2021-22, the 2019-20 school year had the largest number of schools with high student attendance.
  • Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic (2017-18, 2018-19, and 2019-20 school years), a higher percentage of students had 90% or greater cumulative attendance from the beginning to the end of the school year compared to 2020-21 and 2021-22. The 2021-22 year had the largest change throughout the year, where there was a 20-percentage point decrease in cumulative attendance from September to June.