Wisconsin Working to Reduce Number of Truancies in School

By KBJR News 1

September 7, 2012 Updated Sep 7, 2012 at 9:40 PM CDT

SUPERIOR, WI (Northland's NewsCenter) - Wisconsin education leaders agree that achievement in the classroom, starts with physically being in the classroom, but statewide statistics show 16,000 students, in Kindergarten through 3rd grade, each missed 20 or more days of school last year.

Missing class can in some cases lead to a dangerous trend, because by the time the students reach middle school, multiple truancies become a strong indicator of whether students still drop out.

Many factors can lead to missing class including health issues, transportation, and family problems.

While at the elementary level the blame tends to land more on the parents, in high school, the blame is mainly on students.

The Superior Superintendent says, while truancy isn't a huge issue in Superior, the district intervenes early to keep kids in class and works closely with the courts.

"We actually work collaboratively with the courts, and we have all of our administrators, as soon as they have kids that are starting to fall in that truancy area, between 5 and 10 absences, we actually work with them, we have certain dates that are assigned for court and we have administrators sharing here's exactly what's happening," said Janna Stevens.

The superintendent says the district sends home letters and has phone conferences and meetings with the student and their family.

In Superior, dealing with multiple truancies is done through the Student Support Team.

The district also has a coordinator to assist families, and the district does provide transportation, and will go as far as providing clothing and backpacks for students whose families are struggling.

Posted to Web by Jena Pike