September 11, 2014
State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Marks School Attendance Awareness Month
SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today recognized September as "School Attendance Awareness Month," which publicizes the importance of good attendance in schools.
"Children must attend school to learn, succeed, and prepare for a bright future," Torlakson said. "It's a simple concept that's sometimes overlooked. The link between attendance and academic achievement is clear, making it critical that all of us — parents, teachers, administrators, and community members — work together to prevent chronic school absence."
Torlakson was joined at the Capitol news conference by California Secretary of Health and Human Services Diana S. Dooley; Assemblymember Shirley Weber, (D-San Diego); Presiding Juvenile Court Judge Stacy Boulware Eurie of Sacramento; and Special Assistant Attorney General Jill E. Habig.
School Attendance Awareness Month, a national initiative sponsored by Attendance Works [http://awareness.attendanceworks.org/] brings together families, schools, community, and statewide leaders to publicize the connection between school attendance and academic achievement.
Since taking office, Torlakson has made preventing chronic absence a top priority and has taken the following actions:
- Worked with the judiciary and law enforcement to support legislation to reduce truancy and chronic absence.
- Promoted workshops throughout the state, together with the California Endowment, highlighting alternatives to out-of-school suspensions.
- Convened forums that brought together different agencies to focus on monitoring and preventing chronic absence.
The California Legislature recently passed Concurrent Resolution (ACR) 149 [http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201320140ACR149] by Assemblymember Weber, designating September as School Attendance Awareness Month in California.
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Tom Torlakson —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100