Absenteeism Essay

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With problems resulting from absenteeism, many schools and communities across the country have suggested solutions that place the responsibility on four components of society: parents, students, schools, and the community. Wisconsin statutes hold parents responsible for their students’ absenteeism and truancy by enforcing fines, requiring counseling, requiring that parents attend school with their children, and requiring meeting with school officials (Wisconsin, 2000). Similarly, Lee & Miltenberger (1996) report that parents who are perceived as contributing to school refusal behavior by providing attention and tangible reinforcers must receive counseling to reverse high absenteeism. Some schools require counseling and home visits for parents whose children are chronically absent (Ford & Sutphen, 1996). Arkansas and Tulsa County (OK) impose fines on parents, and sixteen school districts in Tulsa County participate in an Absence Registration System that prosecutes parents for repeated absenteeism (Gullatt & Lemoine, 1997).

Strict measures have also been employed for students in many school districts. Wisconsin statutes allow for fines, counseling, participation in work programs, home detention, revocation of work permits, and probationary tactics through teen court programs (Wisconsin, 2000). In the case study conducted by Enomoto (1997), stricter adherence to school rules by students is enforced to reduce absenteeism. Ultimately, students are the ones who must accept responsibility for attending school.

Schools also have a role in taking responsibility for student absenteeism and providing sanctions against those who are chronic abusers of attendance policies. Wisconsin statutes require that schools must contact parents by the end of the second day of absence and allow schools to provide detention and additional assignments as deterrents. Additionally, schools in Wisconsin may prohibit participation i extracurricular activities, allow for n

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