Truancy and dropout are two issues plaguing school districts across the nation. The short- and long-term consequences of both problems are complex and far reaching, affecting students, families, and communities. Once thought of as a problem at the secondary level only, truancy and absenteeism are increasing at the elementary school level, as well. Truants and dropouts experience trouble and struggles in the legal, social, and economic aspects of their lives. In the time of short budgets and a lack of resources, school districts and policy makers struggle to find solutions that are effective, easy to implement, economical, and directed to the elementary school-age population. Though there are many programs, initiatives, and approaches to address the issues, there has been little research conducted to evaluate their efficacy. The present studies involved an evaluation of a case-management intervention utilizing a within-subjects Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and a time-series design analysis, one at the elementary school level and one at the secondary school level. The results of both tests showed that the intervention had no impact on attendance at the individual student level or at the whole-school level at either the elementary school level or secondary level. The short time frame of implementation and large caseloads for the coaches in addition to inadequate data collection and record keeping may have contributed to these results. Thus, continued implementation of the intervention with smaller caseloads for the coaches and more sophisticated record keeping could result in the intervention showing positive results.
Keywords: truancy, dropout, intervention, attendance, absenteeism