Posted Date: 09/08/2023
One of the easiest ways that parents can help their children succeed in school is to ensure that students are in attendance every day.
“School attendance is essential to academic success,” said Eddie Joslin, Child Welfare and Attendance Supervisor for the Beauregard Parish school system. “There is just no substitute for participation in classroom activities, discussions, and interactions with teachers and other students.”
September is Attendance Awareness Month, a time set aside to focus attention on the importance of school attendance and set the stage for a positive and successful school year, he said.
Being in the classroom daily is critically important as it is a key indicator of student achievement, but it also affects a student’s promotion for each grade level. The Louisiana Department of Education has established regulations concerning a student’s school attendance which requires students to attend at least 167 days (or equivalent minutes based on each school’s daily schedule) to earn credit for courses and be eligible for promotion to the next grade.
All absences from school must be approved, and school handbooks provide specific information concerning acceptable reasons for excused absences and the conditions in which students can make up missed work. Our schools also provide for students to make up time and engage in credit recovery in the event they have missed classroom time.
“We make every effort to help our students recover the time and work missed when they have excused absences,” explained Joslin, “but the best scenario is for students to be present each day in class.”
The school system is also in partnership with the Beauregard Parish District Attorney’s Office, which runs the Beauregard Truancy and Assessment Service Center (TASC) to provide early identification and assessment of truancy and to help coordinate interventions to prevent the continued or chronic absences of students at school. Higher attendance rates correlate to fewer academic and behavioral problems as well as lower dropout rates.
“The TASC program helps our community by interrupting the cycle of truancy and reducing the negative effects of truancy for our students, our schools, and our community,” he stated.
“Building a habit and culture of regular attendance at school takes all of us – parents, educators, and our community – realizing the critical importance of regular school attendance for our students and promoting school attendance throughout the school year,” concluded Joslin. “Being present each day allows students to take full advantage of the educational opportunities at school and sets them up for success, now and for their futures.”