Sarah Lenhoff, Ph.D., assistant professor of educational leadership and policy studies and director of the Detroit Education Research Partnership, and her team shared research on chronic absenteeism in Detroit schools read article in Chalkbeat Detroit.
Chalkbeat Detroit, 2/19
Want to fix the chronic absenteeism problem in Detroit schools? Start with transportation.
By Lori Higgins
Transportation struggles aren’t the only reason chronic absenteeism is so pervasive in Detroit schools, but it is the most common reason so many students aren’t showing up for class on a regular basis, Wayne State University researchers say in a new report. About 50% of students in district and charter schools in Detroit are considered chronically absent, meaning they miss about 10% or more of the school year.
The Wayne State researchers, who are part of the Detroit Education Research Partnership, warn that the pandemic has exacerbated the problem, and that seems to be validated by increased chronic absenteeism so far in the Detroit Public Schools Community District. The researchers predict chronic absenteeism will get worse in the fall unless school and community leaders come up with new solutions for school transportation. As part of the study, the researchers conducted in-depth interviews with Detroit parents, high school students, and school staff during the 2019-20 school year. They also analyzed attendance trends in the city.