• Erica Peterson

Top Five Attendance Data Points to Track Right Now

Below are the Top Five Data Points you should be tracking. This list is by no means all that a district or school should be tracking, but if you haven’t looked at your attendance data in a while: You need to start somewhere. I suggest you start here.


Top Five Attendance Data Points to Track Right Now

  1. Daily attendance rate for in-person instruction This is the most familiar to all. Teachers take attendance daily and the attendance office or student information system calculates a daily attendance rate. Compare this point in time day over day, month over month, and year over year.

  2. Daily participation rate for distance learning (DL) Tracking participation feels nebulous and should not. Participation, like taking attendance daily, should use uniform and consistent tracking methods across all schools. If your LMS provider does not already, require them to capture login dates and times, time-outs due to inactivity, and logout dates and times. We highly recommend analyzing your participation data similar to your attendance data. Keep in mind that SB98 60% participation should be your minimum standard.

  3. Total Absences by grade level Many districts are seeing higher than normal rates of absences in lower grade levels, which traditionally have good attendance. Cohort tracking is particularly useful to see when students start to go off track.

  4. Total Absences by subgroup Black, brown, and lower socioeconomic students are disproportionately impacted by distance learning. Attendance is an education equalizer. Kids, who show up for school, do better than kids who don’t. It is imperative that you are measuring and monitoring subgroup attendance to implement the necessary interventions and supports.

  5. Chronic Absence rate Absences for any reason are bad for kids. Chronic absenteeism is a major indicator that students are off-track and is associated with a cadre of negative educational outcomes.


Tell me what you think. Email me at AskErica@sia-us.com. Your questions and comments may be the subject of a future blog post.