Day-to-Day and Long-Term Help for Parents

Topics: Truancy

 Executive summary

The purpose of the Whitsitt Elementary truancy program is to assist parents in helping students maintain regular attendance. We believe by setting both a day-to-day and long-term goal along with connecting the parents to various helpful resources, our students will develop positive behaviors in their school attendance and their academics.

Whitsitt hopes to address the following:

  • Reducing the number of truancy issues from 15% to 10%.
  • Use current resources to coordinate efforts to maximize effectiveness.
  • Stop the cycle of continued unexcused absences before it becomes chronic.

  • Intervene early enough to reduce the risk of more serious criminal activity.
  • Provide support and backup to parents/guardians in their efforts to keep their children in school.

The Schools Attendance Plan hopes to share the responsibility of improving attendance for all students with the home and the community. To accomplish this goal, our staff has created possible strategies and interventions whereby resources and support will be coordinated to generate the desired results.

Program description

The program is an early intervention program with the hopes of assisting parents in helping students maintain attendance in school by setting goals and connecting parents to resources and supporting improved student attendance and performance.

The school counselor and principal have a huge role in advocating for improving the student’s attendance. The school counselor is the person of contact who’s promoting the compliance aspects as well as the following;

  • Facilitating targeted groups that may need intervention.
  • Collaborating with others to provide access to early and ongoing interventions for at-risk students.

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  • Maintaining a structured and efficient process for early identification of at-risk behaviors and student referrals.
  • Providing responsive services that are a continuum in response to student and family needs.
  • Conducting individual and/or group counseling sessions relevant to issues contributing to the truancy issues.

The principal is responsible for sending out five days or more letters to parents. He is also responsible for creating the actual team of stakeholders needed to help the intervention run smoothly.

The program consisted of several levels of intervention.

EARLY INTERVENTION (2-3 unexcused absences)

  • Phone call home, letter, referral to the school counselor, if warrants concern.

LEVEL ONE INTERVENTION: (5 unexcused absences.)

  • Students will possibly be paired with a mentor.
  • Home visits that will allow families to be connected to resources if needed.

LEVEL TWO INTERVENTION: (Face-to-Face meeting.)

  • Assessments are conducted to and e  cause(s) of the truancy.
  • Solutions are discussed and agreed upon by all parties.
  • Solutions are documented on the Truancy Interventions Plan form.
  • All parties (family members, students and stop, and school representatives) sign off on the plan and receive a copy.

LEVEL THREE INTERVENTION: (If unexcused absences continue.)

  • Another face-to-face is conducted via a home visit to go over previous expectations and possible outcomes.


  • If student attendance improves, the counselor and principal will continue to monitor and support, when needed.
  • If student attendance does not improve, move to Level Four Intervention.


  • Referral to truancy office/Metro Student Attendance Center

Evaluation focus

Currently, the program hasn’t undergone an evaluation. However, the focus should be on the program to run and at the end of every quarter or semester, the truancy team could all come together and talk about its effectiveness. As well, as look to find other ways to expand and where they could grow. The logic model created would be one great way to help with evaluating the program, interviews, focus groups, and in many aspects open-ended questions surveys from stakeholders. Collecting qualitative data is time-consuming and can also be expensive. However, it would be very helpful for this program as it grows.

Cultural consideration

The school is very focused and considerate of the cultural aspects that play into the student’s absentee rates. Several of those considerations would be the school exposing children and their families to language-rich environments that they may not have access to at home. Time on task, which means students who miss too much school tend to fall behind and have a hard time catching up. The importance of persistence in building good attendance habits, that essentially lead to success in school and life and making sure students are engaged because the more they miss the less engaged they are when they are in attendance.

Data sources and methods

  • Data shows that 150,000 students are out of school in the state of Tennessee and that ninth graders make up 62 percent of the absentees. Ninth graders are also at higher risk of dropping out.
  • Chronic Kindergarten Absence Associated with Lower 1st Grade Achievement for all children.
  • Students Chronically Absent in Kindergarten & 1st Grade Much Less Likely to Read Proficiently in 3rd Grade.
  • Students who are chronically absent score proficient or advanced on TCAP tests at much lower rates than their peers.
  • Chronically Absent 6th Graders Have Lower Graduation Rate.
  • 9th Grade Attendance Predicts Graduation for Students of All Economic Backgrounds.


So far, the results have been the school’s truancy rate has dropped from 15% to 13%. Mostly, from educating parents on how important it is for students to be in school.

RecommendationsoffThe program needs an evaluation plan that would be beneficial for the future growth of the program. Another recommendation would be educating incoming students’ parents/guardians about the beginning of the school year during orientation. That would allow parents to under the expectations and the outcome if they are not met.

Opportunities for advocacy

The great part about the program is that the stakeholders are huge advocates for the students and their families. Finding more ways to coordinate various efforts to maximize the program’s effectiveness, in hopes of stopping of, stopping, and positively stopstoppingdetermine the cycle of continued unexcused absences before it becomes chronic. More importantly, provide continual support and backup to parents/guardians in their efforts to keep their children in school.

Cite this page

Day-to-Day and Long-Term Help for Parents. (2022, Aug 19). Retrieved from

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