There is a significant loss of learning opportunities when children miss school. Their chances of achieving their full educational potential is lessened by being absent from the class.
A study conducted in Chile shows that absenteeism has a negative impact on children’s learning. In fact, chronic absenteeism (missing more than 10% of school days) in prekindergarten and kindergarten has been shown to be associated with poorer performance at SIMCE at the second and fourth grade level, in both mathematics and language (González and Kluttig, 2019).
The Foundation´s Attendance program provides educational teams and administrators with strategies aimed at promoting attendance as well as other more specific strategies to specifically target children who constantly miss classes.
In addition, the Foundation created an innovative platform that is available to the schools and that allows the teams to enter attendance data in a much simpler and faster way, and thus identify those children who are at risk of chronic absenteeism in order to take preventive measures. The platform allows to enhance the use of data and make data-based decisions.
Key elements of the program
The Attendance program proposes two lines of intervention, based on the main causes of absenteeism that are verified at an early stage:
Which envisage strategies applicable to the entire class, such as an attendance chart with monthly incentives, Super Attendance visits and videos to encourage children not to miss classes, working with parents in meetings, videos featuring the Sinforoso character, along with the daily use of the health corner that includes alcohol gel and other elements that reinforce personal hygiene.
An “Attendance Committee” is implemented in each school in order to work with children who are at risk of chronic absenteeism, led by the school leadership teams and comprised of the educational team and parents, which designs, implements and follows up on specific strategies aimed at reducing absenteeism among these children.
Collaboration with other institutions
The attendance program has worked with Fundación Integra’s establishments in different regions of the country (the Northwest area of the Metropolitan Region, Valparaíso and the Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins Region), in addition to participating in a seminar in Temuco.
It has also collaborated with the Local Public Education Service of Barrancas (the municipalities of Cerro Navia, Pudahuel and Lo Prado, in the Metropolitan Region) and Puerto Cordillera (the municipalities of Coquimbo and Andacollo in the Coquimbo Region), transferring to them the tested strategies of the Un Buen Comienzo program.