In Northern Ontario, the scope of persistent absenteeism is wide. That’s why we’ve created the Here campaign, for use by school boards across our region, to give “every school day counts” champions a brand, a name, and a voice. School board staff can use the Here campaign tools as a springboard to form directed, focused plans to combat absenteeism and bring students back to school.
This campaign’s aim is to build awareness around the attendance issues in our region and to provide communication tools to help improve attendance in our schools.
In Ontario, school boards in the Thunder Bay Region have the highest rates of persistent absenteeism at a whopping 21.6 percent. Based on 194 days of instruction, an Ontario elementary student who misses 19 days of school is deemed persistently absent. With the number of student appointments, sporting events, family commitments, travel days, and illness, it doesn’t take long to reach this number.
Studies and research support what teachers instinctively know: that student absence negatively affects academic performance and important emotional and social connections are compromised. These are a few possible outcomes for students who miss school: