The research problem for this study was the chronic absenteeism for students in Grades 1–3 in a high-poverty, low-performing elementary school in a Southern state. Chronic absenteeism (CA) can result in poor reading skills and high dropout rates for students in low-income areas. The purpose of this basic qualitative study was to explore the perspectives of 6 parents, 6 educators, and 4 school support staff regarding the causes of CA in Grades 1–3 and recommendations to increase and sustain attendance. Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory served as the framework. The research questions were used to identify causes of CA and suggestions for improving attendance. A purposeful sample of 10 school personnel, with 4 years’ experience in the district, and 6 parents, with 1 child enrolled in Grades 1-3, volunteered to participate in this study. Thematic analysis using a priori and open codes was applied to semistructured interview data. Factors related to CA at home included lack of transportation, sickness, lack of means, poor motivation, indifferent attitudes, unsafe home environment, poor parental guidance, and homelessness/eviction. Factors related to CA at school included bullying, poor academic skills, and poor parent/teacher and teacher/student relationships. Participants recommended school sponsored training sessions on building positive relationships between school and home and school bullying for parents and teachers, and information on community services to support parents and their children. These endeavors could contribute to positive social change if school and parental communities would work in partnership to increase and sustain daily attendance, resulting in improved Grades 1-3 students’ reading achievement and reduced dropout rates.
|Advisor:||Brackin, Donna M, Alexson, Andy|
|Commitee:||Kelly, Karen, Howe, Mary|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-A 82/1(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Early childhood education, Educational leadership, Education|
|Keywords:||Causes of absenteeism, Chronic absenteeism, Elementary school, Grades 1-3, High-poverty low-performing, Strategies to improve attendance|
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