School Attendance Awareness Month
Dear Townie Parents,
September is School Attendance Awareness Month and improving attendance is one of the key goals of the Learn365RI initiative. With that in mind, I am asking parents to make sure their children come to school every day. For East Providence to meet our fullest potential as a city, for our schools to meet our promise of providing a best-in-class education, and for every Townie to meet their potential as an individual, we need our youth to show up to school every day. Attendance matters.
Across the country, throughout Rhode Island, and here in East Providence, school attendance has sputtered in the wake of the pandemic. While it might sound like our daily attendance rates are only down a little bit, a couple of percentage points (from 93.1% in 2018-2019 to 90.8% in 2021-2022), when you add that difference up the totals are staggering. In the 2021-2022 school year, East Providence students were down nearly 20,000 days of instruction (~5,000 students x 2.3% x 180 school days).
It is time we get ourselves back on track. If your child misses school, they are missing out on important opportunities to make friends and connect with mentors, to develop new ideas and to join new sports and activities. Our schools are wonderful places, and we want your children adding to their richness each and every day.
Moreover, research indicates that missing just two days or school a month makes a child chronically absent. Chronically absent students are more likely to struggle academically and less likely to graduate on time from high school. At a time when getting a diploma and going on to earn a post-high school credential or college degree makes a significant difference in increasing lifelong earning power, it is imperative that we get every student in school every day.
I also know that some families may be struggling with motivating their child to attend school. Parenting can be tough, and it’s okay to ask for help. Give your child’s school a call. East Providence has amazing adults in every one of our school buildings, and I know that they will do whatever it takes to support your child’s success. If your child is having significant challenges, you can also reach out to Kids Link RI at Lifespan at 1-855-543-5465 where trained counselors are available to support Rhode Island families.
By working together, we can get all of our kids back in school, every day, and on the path to reaching their fullest potential.
Please bookmark the school calendar. Attendance matters!
Roberto L. DaSilva - Mayor
Dr. Sandra Forand - Superintendent of Schools
Jenni Furtado - School Committee Chairwoman
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here