In Speech To Superintendents, Education Commissioner Urges Prevention of Student Disengagement

(CBS Connecticut) — Speaking to an auditorium full of School superintendents, State Education Commissioner Dianna Wentzell stressed the importance of preventing students from becoming disengaged, and from becoming chronically absent.

Wentzell says newly available data include warning signs indicating which younger students may become chronically absent in high school.

Fifty-six thousand students were considered chronically absent last year.  By the senior year of high school, eighteen percent of students are chronically absent.

“This really is New Year’s Eve,” Wentzell said, referring to the upcoming start of the school year. “We are counting down now, because within a week or two in your districts, in your buildings, the doors go open and the kids come in.  And that is our happy New Year.”

Wentzell says the state has much to be proud about.  She discussed the recent announcement of improvement in the percentage of students considered college and career ready under the Smarter Balanced SBAC test.

Wentzell also said that students see the relevance of the SAT test, which Connecticut is giving to all students in the eleventh grade.

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