Governor Heineman wants kids to show up for school. He says if they show up, they’ll do better on achievement tests.
The governor has launched a program with local school officials to reduce truancy. Heineman says that by merely showing up every day for class, students will do better on assessment tests. He says that under the program, schools will keep track of attendance. An excused absence will be OK.
“But if someone is consistently missing school, they want to intervene, they want to help them however they can,” Heineman says. “And, again, it has to done at the school building level with principals, guidance counsels and teachers helping out.”
Heineman points to studies that indicate that when a student misses more than 20 days of school they score 30 points less on Nebraska reading assessment tests taken by juniors in high school.
Statistics supplied by the governor’s office indicate nearly 22,000 Nebraska students missed more than 20 days of school last year. Most of those absences, 58%, were by high school students. Even missing more than 10 days has an impact on achievement. The governor’s office says those students who missed more than 10, but less than 20 days of school scored 17 points lower in reading assessment tests.