How Maternal, Family and Cumulative Risk Affect Absenteeism in Early Schooling: Facts for Policymakers

National Center for Children in Poverty

What is the role of the schooling experience in the educational trajectories and outcomes of children exposed to risk? Maternal and family risks are associated with greater absenteeism and the cumulative exposure to risk best predicts chronic absenteeism in early schooling. Kindergarten children in contact with three or more risks missed three or more days than their peers not facing any risks. But as children progress through the elementary grades, the impact of cumulative risk on school attendance lessens, only to rise again in the fifth grade. The most vulnerable children — those who are poor or racial/ethnic minorities or suffer from poor health — have the greatest exposure to cumulative risk.


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Academic Units
National Center for Children in Poverty
National Center for Children in Poverty, Columbia University
Pathways to Early School Success Publications
Published Here
June 9, 2010