Fall 2022, No. 2
A Note from the Executive Director
In the weeks before and after a holiday break from school, absences spike.

Consider sending letters home to families and caregivers before the Thanksgiving and Winter breaks to express your gratitude for their partnership. Engage students by planning an inviting activity for the day before break begins and/or on the day students are expected to return. See below for links to our updated resources.

This year’s absence numbers may be daunting. Reducing the high levels of chronic absence experienced over the past several years is possible, but it won't happen overnight. Success requires a continual focus on engagement, support and rebuilding of routines, especially for the students most adversely affected by the pandemic.

The good news is that there are numerous examples of schools and districts using effective practices – some adopted prior to the pandemic and others developed during – to re-engage families and students to address and overcome attendance barriers. Listen to one of the AAC webinars posted on our website, with the presentation slides and a discussion guide.

We’ve added two new individuals to our Attendance Works team: Inika Williams, Associate Director for Policy, and Gisela I. Ariza, Associate Director of Programs. Watch for our next newsletter to learn more about each.

Over the Thanksgiving break, I urge everyone to celebrate the extra work we’ve all done during the past few years and to find a moment for relaxation with friends and family.

With gratitude,

Hedy N. Chang
Founder and Executive Director
You are our Foundation! We rely on contributors like you to help us keep Attendance Works resources free for everyone. Join our movement and donate today.
Hedy Chang, Executive Director
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News Highlights
Attendance Awareness Campaign
Let us know how we're doing!

Please give us feedback on this year's Attendance Awareness Campaign and offer ideas for how we can improve. Our short survey will just take 5 minutes to complete. Fill in your contact information and enter a drawing to win a seat in the Attendance Works three-part training series for educators.

Raising awareness about the opportunities schools offer students and families can continue all year! Our social media images and messages remain available for everyone on our website.
Resource Spotlight
We’ve updated our messaging for families to send before the Thanksgiving and Winter break holidays. Find tips and letters to send home.

Many students are having a harder time managing emotions. Playworks’ new case study, Kids are Still Recovering from Pandemic Losses. Play Can Help, offers three ways we’ve seen play already making a difference as school communities rebuild connections and recover resilience.

What does it mean to be a school-friendly health system? Hedy Chang, Dr. Danielle Dooley, and Dr. Lisa Downey discuss the health/wellness of our schools and its connection to student attendance. Listen to the podcast sponsored by iTutor.

Spread the word with our new social media messaging that emphasizes working with students and families as partners to ensure students get to school every day possible, and have opportunities to connect, engage and thrive.
Health Policy News
State Policy Opportunities: Advancing Comprehensive School Mental Health Systems to Support Students, developed by Healthy Schools Campaign and Mental Health America, identifies 24 opportunities plus recommendations for states to integrate mental health services within school settings.

The National Association of State Boards of Education new two-page analysis, Education Support Professionals as Partners in Improving School Climate, highlights policies state leaders can consider when enhancing access to school-based health services, such as expanding school-based health centers, school health advisory councils and school Medicaid programs.
The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading’s #LearningTuesday webinar on Nov. 15, 3-4:30pm ET, will focus on Safety and Belonging First: Advancing Well-Being for Learning Recovery. Register here.
Professional Development
We've opened new dates in January and February for our three-part e-training for educators. Participants will learn proven, evidence-based, tiered strategies to promote attendance and engagement. Take the training with the attendance team! Learn more.
Attendance Works would like to express its deep appreciation to the foundations that are currently funding our work nationally and in communities across the country: Abell Foundation, The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, Heising-Simons Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, Open Society Institute–Baltimore, The Patterson Foundation, Rogers Family Foundation, Stuart Foundation, United Way of Greater Kansas City, United Way of Treasure Valley.