Attendance and participation in class is the key to achievement of success. Studies indicate that students who attend school regularly are more likely to succeed at school.
Students have a responsibility to maintain a good record of attendance, conduct and progress (a student who is absent from a class for five lessons or more per term is deemed to be ‘at risk’ of not achieving the best possible result) and initiate contact with teachers concerning absence from class, missed in-class assessment tasks, requests for extension of the due date for out-of-class assessment tasks and other issues pertaining to assessment.
In general terms, the only acceptable reasons for absences are for illness or a school activity such as an excursion or tour.
An American Study (Absences Add Up: How School Attendance Influences Student Success By Alan Ginsburg, Phyllis Jordan and Hedy Chang) in August 2014 showed that students with higher absenteeism rates have lower scores on national standardised tests; reinforcing a growing body of research confirming the connection between school attendance and student achievement and showing the pernicious effects of school absence throughout a student’s academic career;
- Absenteeism in middle and high school can predict dropout rates. The study found that found that a student who is chronically absent in any year between 8th and 12th grade is 7.4 times more likely to drop out;
- Absenteeism influences not just chances for graduating but also for completing college (university). The study found that only 11 percent of the chronically absent students who graduated from high school made it to a second year of university, compared to 51 percent of students with better high school attendance records.
These findings are supported by Australian studies which show there are clear links between school attendance, achievement in school, school completion rates and overall educational attainment (Musser 2011; Zubrick et al. 2006). A 2012 report Improving Student Attendance, by the Queensland Audit Office found students with attendance rates of 85 per cent or less [due to unexplained reasons] are: four times more likely to be suspended or excluded; 1.5 times more likely to not finish Year 10; and 3.5 times more likely to not obtain an Overall Position (OP) 1-15. The findings show that as attendance rates decrease, so do the NAPLAN scores for reading and numeracy. This trend between attendance rate and achievement level was found to be consistent at every year level and subject.