Attendance is an important part of academic achievement. When students are absent from school, they miss the instruction that their classmates receive. Frequent absences can make it more difficult for children to master school work in the same amount of time as the rest of their class. For this reason, the district Report Card includes data on the percentages of students who attend school each day in this district and the state.
Look carefully at district attendance rates and compare them with state averages. Attendance rates usually look high when you read them as a percentage, but even slight differences from 100 percent can be quite meaningful. For example, a 96 percent district attendance rate sounds quite high, and is a bit higher than the state average of 95 percent. However, in a small district of 10,000 students, a 96 percent attendance rate still means that 400 students - roughly the size of an average elementary school - aren't in school every day.
School and district administrators are good people to talk to about school attendance rates and what might be done to improve them. When you talk with administrators, you might want to ask if the same students are absent from school each day. Repetitive absences are a larger concern in terms of school performance than periodic absences for doctor's appointments.
District and state averages are calculated based on schools with similar grade ranges. This table uses six grade level categories in order to provide you with the most accurate data for comparisons. Across the state, districts vary the way they split grade levels across schools. Schools might have standard grade level groupings (K-5, 6-8, 9-12), or they may have less common ones, like: K-12, K-8, 7-12, 4-5, 6-11, and 10-12. Since schools are different depending on the age of the children they serve, the categories in this table group schools with other schools "most like theirs." For additional information about how school grade levels are categorized see the Data Sources & Information Guide.
For more information about how attendance rates are calculated and other technical questions, see the Data Sources & Information Guide.