Student Attendance: Every Day Counts!

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Every Day Counts! Taskforce

The Every Day Counts! Taskforce is a partnership of diverse District of Columbia agencies and stakeholders that collectively advance and coordinate strategies to increase student attendance and reduce truancy. The group includes representatives from education, justice, health clusters of the Administration, allowing for holistic development and implementation of attendance policy. The Taskforce is chaired by Interim Deputy Mayor for Education Ahnna Smith, and the following entities are represented:

Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA), Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (CJCC), Court Social Services Division (CSSD), DC Public Charter School Board (PCSB), DC Public Schools (DCPS), Department of Behavioral Health (DBH), Department of Human Services (DHS), Deputy Mayor of Greater Economic Opportunity (DMGEO), Deputy Mayor for Public Safety & Justice (DMPSJ), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Transportation (DOT), Justice Grants Administration (JGA), Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), Office of the State Superintendent (OSSE), Office of the Attorney General (OAG), State Board of Education (SBOE), the Offices of Chairman Phil Mendelson and Councilmember David Grosso, public charter school leaders, and others. To inquire about participating, email Aurora Steinle, Senior Advisor, Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education, [email protected]

The Every Day Counts! Taskforce’s strategy is three-pronged. The Taskforce works to collect and report on key data points (“Measure”), regularly analyze and ‘review these data (“Monitor”) and craft information-backed policies in response (“Act”). The partnership uses a data-driven EdStat model to inform its analysis and policy-making under the “Measure, Monitor, Act” framework.

Taskforce activities have included:

  • Created as a resource hub for students, families, educators and other stakeholders
  • Conducted learning sessions for agencies on student support team attendance meetings and health resources
  • Selected Every Day Counts! Taskforce student representatives
  • Annually designated September Attendance Awareness Month
  • Conducted a self-assessment of citywide progress in partnership with Attendance Works
  • Adopted the Every Day Counts! Strategic Plan
  • Launched a large scale public messaging campaign including bus ads, print and digital media, and events
  • Initiated the Every Day Counts! pledge drive seeking students and community members to take the pledge to make every day count
  • Provided training at OSSE LEA Institute, OSSE Community Schools COP and OSSE Start of School Summit through Taskforce Presentations
  • Included attendance in OSSE's School Quality Framework and School Report Cards
  • Released and presented School Health Plan to Taskforce
  • Rewarded schools and students for improvement in attendance with events, sports tickets, bikes, sneakers, and laptops
  • Hosted two student design challenges focused on developing attendance solutions through engaging students and stakeholders in design thinking
  • Supported Ideas Summit and Attendance Stat, and other data-driven forums to guide improvements
  • Convened 2018 Attendance Summit for 100+ community and education stakeholders
  • Launched Cross-Sector Attendance Community of Practice for school-based staff leading attendance efforts
  • Engaged 200+ MBYLI Youth for input on planning for School Year 2018-19 attendance pilots

Meeting Materials


Other Resources

*Note: The Truancy Taskforce was renamed the Every Day Counts! Taskforce in July 2017.*