Bookmarks: Literacy News and Insights, March 2024

March 31, 2024

Literacy News

A monthly collection of news, data, viewpoints, and reports worth reading. Click on a headline to get the full story.



Why School Absences Have ‘Exploded’ Almost Everywhere

New York Times | March 29, 2024

Nationwide, increases in chronic absence have occurred in districts big and small, and across income and race. Trends suggest that “something fundamental has shifted in American childhood and the culture of school, in ways that may be long lasting.”


Parents Are Not Fully Aware of, or Concerned About, Their Children’s School Attendance

Brookings | March 26, 2024

Parents can play a critical role in substantially reducing absenteeism, but in a recent survey of those with children at risk of being chronically absent, less than half reported being concerned about it.


Learning Loss Win-Win: High-Impact Tutoring Boosts Attendance

The74 | March 1, 2024

Preliminary results from a new study show that high-dosage tutoring during regular school hours had the added benefit of improving attendance, especially among those who were chronically absent in the prior school year; their attendance improved by at least five days. “Part of why kids don’t show up is because they don’t feel successful in school,” said Hedy Chang, executive of Attendance Works.




Despite K-2 Reading Gains, Students Face a ‘Much Harder Journey’ Ahead

The74 | March 15, 2024

Experts say new curriculum, better instruction, and tutoring are making a difference, but new data shows reading progress among K-2 students has slowed.




Study: The Effects of School-Based SEL Programs

Science Direct | Volume 3

A systematic review and meta-analysis of the effects of social and emotional learning (SEL) programs in the United States reports that K-12 students who participated in universal school-based SEL programs experienced significantly improved academic achievement, school functioning, social and emotional skills, attitudes, behaviors, and perceptions of school climate and safety.




Podcast: Sold a Story en Español

American Public Media | March 19, 2024

A Spanish adaptation of the compelling Sold a Story podcast is now available, condensed into one 58-minute episode plus a conversation between Fernández and Emily Hanford for Spanish-speaking parents whose children are learning to read English in American schools.