Questions frequently arise about funding based on Average Daily Attendance or ADA. Although funding is a factor, it is not the most important consideration when making decisions. Consider the following:
- Districts receive some funding based on average daily attendance. Average is the key word. Attendance rates have to drop well below 90% before there is a significant impact to the district.
- Districts are allowed to substitute their worst 10 attendance days that are weather related.
- Students may be suspended for up to 10 days and not be counted as absent.
- Districts may deduct the five lowest attendance days before computing ADA.
These facts may help people understand some of the decisions that are made a little better. Buses don’t run on questionable roads because it could be dangerous, not because it may be a low attendance day. Suspending children is encouraged as a last resort after other intervention attempts are made because “push-out” behavior does not solve the problems of the child, not because of funding. As a non-profit organization who receives a large part of its money from tax payers, we must be mindful of funding based on attendance. However, the main concern about low attendance days is the fact that if children are not in school then they are not being educated.