Dist. #205 looking at reporting issues and solutions to truancy problem

Truancy, or absenteeism, had been identified as one of District 205’s biggest problems in recent reporting.

Superintendent Dr. John Asplund presented data to board members at Monday night’s meeting giving some insight into what the cause of the problem could be, and immediately he brought attention to one thing that could help reduce absences.

“We do not standardize how we define what an absence is in this district and so we’ve already begun some preliminary discussions on making sure that happens.”

By standardizing absence reporting and getting more accurate counts, the district could reduce how much overstating is done when a student misses the first few minutes of a class.

“If you miss the first ten minutes of block one at GHS, that doesn’t mean you’re absent for 80 minutes. It means you’re absent for 10.”

Asplund said that they’ll be coming back every month to look at the data and creating some quick ideas to address the absenteeism.

King Elementary School is getting a complete remodel at a lower than anticipated cost. The school board approved a series of bid items that included remodels to the existing bathrooms and hallways.

Additionally, board members learned that through some cost savings measures, the project was coming in under budget. “So we’re remodeling all of King plus adding on for less than what the amount was,” said Dr. Asplund at the meeting.

The board also approved a change order request for a sanitary sewer at Lombard Middle School.

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