The COVID school closures goosed chronic absenteeism, and it’s not getting better: The city needs to look at drastic measures to turn things around.
Nearly 56% of New York City Department of Education 12th-graders missed at least 18 days of school in the last school year; overall chronic absenteeism hit 40%.
This matches the numbers The Post’s Susan Edelman dug up last year: She cited about 375,000 chronic absentees out of 938,000 registered DOE students.
As the Empire Center report School’s Out Forever notes, chronic truancy is especially rampant among black and Hispanic high-schoolers, at nearly 50%.
This means added learning loss and greater chances at dropping out, among other ills.
But it’s no barrier to “graduating”: DOE rules say students can’t be denied credit or promotion “based on lack of seat time alone.”
That’s not working: The kids need to see consequences for skipping, whether it’s being held back, losing out on their free MetroCards or consequences from their parents — which would require DOE schools to actually be in touch with parents (far too many of them can’t be bothered).
We expect Schools Chancellor David Banks is appalled at these numbers.
The question is whether he can face down the ideologues and self-interested do-nothings that control so much of the DOE system to make a difference.