Texting to aid attendance

CASBO eNewsletter
Posted: December 20, 2016

High school students like to text — we all know that. But would texting these same students’ parents produce a sustained improvement in high school students’ attendance?

Now for the bad news. The answer is “no.” 

Research organization MDRC teamed up with New Visions for Public Schools to see if texts could improve student attendance. New Visions created the software and started using it in spring 2016. The program accessed student attendance records and automatically sent daily text messages to parents, telling them if their child was in class that day. It also texted weekly attendance summaries to the parents.

The experiment showed that the attendance of students whose families received texts was no better than that of a control group who did not receive texts.

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