September is Attendance Awareness Month

6The state of Washington is joining a nationwide effort this month to call attention to the importance of regular school attendance.

September is Attendance Awareness Month in Washington, where one out of every six students was absent at least 18 days in the 2014-15 school year.

“School exists to train people to be successful in life,” said Randy Dorn, state superintendent of Public Instruction. “Employers want employees who show up every day, and they want employees who show up on time. Telling students that it’s OK to go to school sometimes but not others will only hurt them later in life.”

Dorn said that one of his chief priorities is to shine a light on chronic absenteeism. “For the past couple of years we’ve been able to look deeply into the data,” he said. “And that’s helping us see trends, which will help us solve the problem.”

Attendance Awareness Month began in 2013 by Attendance Works, a project of the national project of the Child and Family Policy Center.