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School attendance -- Oregon -- Statistics, School attendance -- Oregon, Academic achievement -- Oregon


The Chief Education Office (CEdO) has commissioned this report on chronic absenteeism in Oregon schools to better understand this problem in general, to specifically hear from students and families most likely to be chronically absent, and to present recommendations for the State and local communities. This report is a result of collaboration between CEdO, Portland State University (PSU), and the Coalition of Communities of Color (CCC). Researchers from PSU conducted all of the original research. This report builds on previous work in Oregon and around the country, but it is not a duplication of existing research. Instead, the research is a novel contribution because of its extensive use of focus groups, inclusion of culturally specific focus groups, detailed thematic analysis between and among stakeholder groups, and deep-dives in the areas of students with disabilities and Native American students.

The report’s literature review gives the reader a comprehensive foundation that defines the terms and measures associated with school attendance, shows the connection between attendance and academic outcomes, provides statistics related to chronic absenteeism and achievement for Oregon, provides a framework for understanding the reasons for absenteeism, and details current practices that are considered the best for schools, districts, and states to increase attendance. The review shows that although chronic absenteeism affects students of all ages, it is particularly a problem for students of color, students with disabilities, and students living in poverty. Finally, the problem is complicated, and requires a range of interventions, tailored to specific communities that address every context of students’ lives. The review demonstrates that there is still a good deal to learn about chronic absenteeism and that conducting focus group research will paint a better picture of the Oregon context and identify benefits and drawbacks of specific practices for specific locales.

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