Chronic absenteeism is linked to decreased academic performance and higher drop-out rates, and it can lead to higher rates of criminal activity among teenagers.

In Alabama parents and guardians of children enrolled in public schools are required to submit a written explanation of all absences within three days of the child’s return to school. Failure to do so is evidence of the child being truant for each day absent. Seven such absences within a school year constitute a student being truant for the purpose of filing a petition in court.


  • Attendance Works – Attendance Works promotes awareness of the importance of school attendance in academic achievement. This site has resources, research, and policy information about the importance of attendance and how to improve attendance rates.
  • National Center for School Engagement: Attendance – The National Center for School Engagement works to promote what they call the three A’s necessary for school success: attendance, attachment, and achievement. This site includes an extensive library of fact sheets, presentations, and reports about attendance.
  • Education Commission of the States: Attendance – The ECS was created to improve education by facilitating the exchange of information and ideas among school leaders and policymakers. This site contains information about different state policies dealing with attendance and research conducted about attendance.