Report: High School and Attendance

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Improving Attendance at Beech Grove Intermediate School:
A Recommendation Report

Like other schools around the nation, Beech Grove Intermediate School is experiencing a serious problem with attendance. This has been cited as a problem and something that needs to be addressed so that Beech Grove Intermediate can achieve the attendance rate they need to become a Four-Star status school. Currently, the attendance at Beech Grove Intermediate is averaging around 95 percent. The rate needs to increase to 97 percent for the school to achieve Four-Star
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10). In short, all of the authors agree that parental involvement and student-teacher interaction is very important in keeping absenteeism down.

Effective Policies and Parental Contact
As schools seek new programs and ideas for increasing student attendance, one of the two most frequently mentioned tactics in the literature are having an effective attendance policy and increasing communication with parents and guardians. According to Dan Vandivier (2003), a high school principal, attendance policies must be stringent and must also be persistently adhered to. He states that policies must be fair and also have “flexibility to accommodate mitigating circumstances” (Vandivier, 2003, p. 81). Vandivier’s new attendance policy no longer distinguished between excused and unexcused and allowed administration discretion in dealing with excessive absences for legitimate reasons (Vandivier, 2003, p. 81). Dougherty (1999) agrees that schools must produce a clear fair attendance policy that is up to date and standardized and communicate it.

Many studies have also shown a correlation between increased parental contact and increased attendance (Smerka, 1993; Epstein & Sheldon, 2002). Smerka (1993) noted that after mailing notices to all parents informing them of the success of the attendance program and asking for their support, the perfect
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