Federal and State Legislation on Truancy

Evelyn Campbell, M.S.W.

in Truancy Prevention and Intervention

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780195398496
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199777402 | DOI:

Series: SSWAA Workshop Series

Federal and State Legislation on Truancy

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This chapter reviews recent policies on truancy data and gives a summary of how each state defines truancy. It also illustrates the importance of school social workers' understanding policies regarding truancy and its impact on families. Overall, the definitions for truancy and habitual truancy vary from state to state and sometimes vary within each state (school district to school district). The National Cooperative Education Statistics System National Forum on Education Statistics, Truancy Working Group, decided that it is not possible at this time to have a uniform definition of truancy at the national level. Every school has an attendance policy; however, it may be unclear what is required from the student and parent. School social workers need to help the families in their schools understand the importance of good school attendance and the consequences for truancy. In some states support staff may need to advocate to their elected officials to make state laws on truancy more explicit and more accessible.

Keywords: truancy; social work practice; school social workers; attendance policy; state law

Chapter.  3907 words. 

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