Tips for Preventing Truancy

Here are 30 ways to get your child to attend school on a regular basis:

1. Take an active interest in your kid’s schoolwork. Ask them to demonstrate what they learned in school. Know the kids your youngster associates with.

2. Ask your youngster her thoughts on truancy.

3. Look for early signs of a youngster’s decision that school is not worthwhile. Monitor changes in friendships, teachers, or classrooms or even the loss of a pet or family member. All of these things contribute to reasons why kids dread going to school.

4. Prepare your youngster for school with required supplies and clothes. If you need assistance, contact your local social services agency.

5. Regularly contact the school office to make sure your youngster is attending school. Check in with his or her teachers on a regular basis. Make random visits to your youngster’s classroom to observe.

6. Encourage your youngster to take an active role in the school by joining clubs or participating in sports. Teach them when and how to ask for help.

7. Ask your youngster how you can help. Think about what situations he or she might face and talk about ways to handle these situations before they occur.

8. Consider counseling in you, the parent, cannot resolve the issue on your own.

9. Discuss with your youngster the reasons she has been truant.

10. Don’t tell your youngster that he/she does not have to participate in school activities or does not have to attend school at all.

11. Drop your youngster at school in the morning and watching him enter the building.

12. Give the consistent message, “You will go to school.”

13. Have consistent expectations. Relaxing the rules for even 1 assignment or day can give a mixed message. Make sure that all your kids live up to the same standards.

14. Investigate what's going on at school. If it's an issue of bullying, parents need to find out what's really going on. Once parents know whether the youngster's complaint is a valid 1, it's easier to work with the youngster around the issue, both in and outside of school.

15. Look for alternatives. If your youngster tells you he or she is bored at school, pursue support outside the school such as music lessons, sports clubs, neighborhood or church-related youth groups, or mentors. Seek out and enroll your youngster in a tutoring program, if necessary.

16. Maintain your routine. Stick to a regular schedule for homework, bedtime, and waking up.

17. Make school relevant. Push for activities where students can take part in their own learning by developing projects to address community needs.

18. Look for negative behavior changes such as alcohol use or staying out late. Seek a counselor if your youngster’s behavior becomes, distant, withdrawn, anxious, depressed, delinquent or aggressive.

19. Outline the punishments you will enforce if he engages in truancy.

20. Sign up and attend parenting education programs. This is a great place to learn new techniques and to share what you have learned.

21. Plan visits to the doctor or dentist after the school day ends. If you must take an appointment during the school day, allow the youngster to miss only time needed for that appointment.

22. Reward good attendance

23. Request meetings with teachers, if needed.

24. Talk to your kids about the role education plays in future/ life success. Let them know that you do not approve of them missing school. Refuse to write an excuse for unacceptable reasons. Review acceptable and unacceptable behavior with your youngster.

25. Know the school’s attendance policy, the time school starts, the difference between an excused and unexcused absence, and share the information with your youngster.

26. Be sure that your youngster knows if he or she skips school, there will be consequences to pay such as losing television or video game time, limiting time with friends, or the loss of other privileges.

27. Talk with your youngster about acceptable and unacceptable behavior and grades. Discuss homework rules and school attendance.

28. Tell him your views on truancy.

29. Work as a team with the school and community.

30. When your child skips a class, react immediately by insisting that your youngster attend school