Chronic absenteeism — defined as a student missing 10 percent or more of required school days in a year — is obviously harmful to the student’s education. Every school day missed is a lesson not learned. It’s also harmful to the schools, because state and federal funding is based on attendance.

Which counties have the largest percentage of chronically absent students?1. Sonoma — 17%2. Solano — 14.7%3. Contra Costa — 10.7%4. Alameda — 10%5. Napa — 10%6. San Mateo — 9.5%7. Marin — 8.6%8. Santa Clara — 8.6%9. San Francisco — 8.3%[bar color=”Accent-Color” title=”1. Sonoma” percent=”17″][bar color=”Extra-Color-1″ title=”2. Solano” percent=”14.7″][bar color=”Accent-Color” title=”3. Contra Costa” percent=”10.7″][bar color=”Extra-Color-1″ title=”4. Alameda” percent=”10″][bar color=”Accent-Color” title=”5. Napa” percent=”10″][bar color=”Extra-Color-1″ title=”6. San Mateo” percent=”9.5″][bar color=”Accent-Color” title=”7. Marin” percent=”8.6″][bar color=”Extra-Color-1″ title=”8. Santa Clara” percent=”8.6″][bar color=”Accent-Color” title=”9. San Francisco” percent=”8.3″]The nature of rural life — including the effects of the weather, the need for students to work either at home or elsewhere, and the remoteness of residents — may explain why urban counties have lower absentee rates.

Source: California Department of Education

Daniel J. Willis