Year two of our county-wide
Attendance Awareness Campaign 
is underway!
Theme for November: 
No empty chairs, we want you there!

Key Message: For every day of school missed, it takes three days to make up what was taught. Families should avoid extended vacations that require your children to miss school.

Communication Tools/Strategies: All families want what is best for their children, but they don't always realize how absences can add up to academic problems. Sometimes they allow children to miss school when it's not absolutely necessary. 

* Send a letter out before Thanksgiving and again in the weeks before the longer winter break urging students and families to avoid absences

Encourage teachers to talk to students about the importance of showing up in the days before and after the holiday break.



Principals and teachers have an opportunity to reduce holiday absences by ensuring that parents and students understand the toll that absenteeism takes on achievement.  Attendance Works has developed some  tools and messaging  for school leaders hoping to encourage good attendance around the winter holidays.  Follow this link to Attendance Works website for holiday messaging  resources here! 
Engage now, and help us boost school attendance and reduce truancy countywide! You can also follow the status of the county-wide campaign and share the strategies that you are using at your site on on social media

Upcoming Webinars and E-Summits

THIS WEEK --  Thursday, November 12, 2015:  
Every Student, Every Day: A Virtual Summit on Addressing and Eliminating Chronic Absence
11:00 a.m. PT / 2:00 p.m. ET

The U.S. Department of Education, Attendance Works, Everybody Graduates Center and United Way Worldwide invite you to attend Every Student, Every Day: A Virtual Summit on Addressing and Eliminating Chronic Absence. This online summit will outline key steps that states, districts, and communities can take to improve student achievement by monitoring and reducing chronic absence. 
Register here.

Featuring two of the nation's premiere experts on absenteeism -
Johns Hopkins researcher Bob Balfanz and Attendance Works Director Hedy Chang. The e-summit will:
  • Explain the importance of looking beyond average daily attendance rates to identify students who are missing so much school that they are falling behind academically.
  • Share strategies that work for improving attendance and achievement, including positive messaging, family outreach, student incentives and mentoring programs.
  • Highlight the importance of engaging community partners, such as health providers and criminal justice agencies.
  • Balfanz and Chang will also introduce school district leaders who are using these strategies to improve attendance and achievement. The e-summit is hosted by the United Way Worldwide.
Please join us!
The Attendance Awareness Month Contest Results Are IN!
The results of the recent Attendance Awareness Elementary Poster and Middle School Essay Contest are in.  There were 256 posters and 60 essays submitted, and we are pleased to announce that the Grand Prize and 12 Runner-up Winners for each category are now posted on the CCCOE website and may be found HERE!
Please notify your teachers and students who participated in this exciting event, and join me in expressing our appreciation to Phillips 66 for their generous sponsorship of this contest. We would also like to acknowledge those who participated in the judging: Emily Justice, Derrick Kirk, Laura Delehunt, and the members of the Youth Health Coalition.

Each winner will be invited, along with their parents, to attend the Contra Costa County Board Meeting on December 9th at about 5:00 p.m. to be recognized by the committee and the board. At that time, we will also be thanking our sole sponsor Phillips 66, and the members of the Youth Health Coalition. Contest winners will receive a certificate and gift card. Please consider joining us then! 
Thank you to everyone who helped to involve our students in raising awareness regarding the importance of school attendance by participating in this contest.

Check out more information in our media release

Principal Checklist
It's not too late! We have extended the time that Principals have to share strategies that you have effectively implemented at your school site around attendance awareness. You and your school can still be recognized on the 2015-16 Principal Honor Roll.  
Contra Costa County Office of Education | 925-942-3343
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