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United Way Blog

#Schooleveryday: Why It Matters

Chronic absence – defined as missing 10% or more of school due to excused or unexcused absences – causes children to miss a critical amount of instructional time, putting them at-risk for failing to meet academic standards or graduate from high school on time. Attendance matters! And we all can do something about it.

That is why United Ways across the U.S. are participating in Attendance Awareness Month, working with communities to raise awareness of the effects of chronic absence on a child’s ability to succeed in school. Here are just some of the ways we're helping:

  • United Way of Greater Cleveland is working with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District’s “Get to School – You can Make It” attendance awareness campaign. Members of the Cleveland community can can follow them on Instagram and Twitter @Get2SchoolCLE or stop by their local school to pick up a yard sign.
  • United Way of Southeastern Idaho’s MENTOR network of affiliate mentorship partners use Attendance Awareness Month to highlight the effects of mentorship on school attendance and engagement to their community.
  • United Way of Northeastern and Central Connecticut puts signs on city buses, hosts city-wide back-to-school celebrations and has even gotten Governor Dannel P. Malloy to declare September to be Attendance Awareness Month. They've also developed online tools and resources on the Hartford School District’s website and promotes attendance pledges for families that promise to send their child to school every day.
  • United Way of Anchorage works with schools to develop peer-to-peer messaging about the importance of attending school to make the message more meaningful to drive meaningful outcomes.

Beyond participating in Attendance Awareness Month in September, local United Ways are supporting chronic absence prevention efforts year-round. And we'd love your support. So, how will you help us make sure kids are in #schooleveryday? Join us in doing your part to make sure students are able to attend school each and every day.