Working Together to Improve School Attendance

Lake County, CALIF. (September 5, 2023) - During the 2022-23 school year, 48 percent of chronically absent students in Lake County improved their attendance through the Communities for School Success program.

The Lake County Office of Education Communities for School Success program was implemented in partnership with Lake County school districts to address the high chronic absenteeism rates in Lake County schools.

Brock Falkenberg, Lake County Superintendent of Schools said, “When students improve their attendance rates, they improve their academic prospects and chances for graduating.” 

Chronic absenteeism is defined as missing two or more days of school, excused or unexcused, a month.  

During the 2022-23 school year, the Attendance Liaisons contacted 915 K-12 Lake County students. Of those students contacted, 75 percent returned to school within three days of a home visit. Less than half of the contacted students needed a second contact attempt.

Overall, 1,400 contacts or attempts were made by the Attendance Liaisons.

An Attendance Liaison is an individual who works directly with students to find solutions to improve their attendance rates. Each Liaison is assigned to a single school district. 

Barriers that are preventing regular school attendance include trauma, transportation, cultural differences or even students not finding school engaging or fun. 

Attendance Liaisons held weekly Social Emotional Learning (SEL) activities during the lunch break at schools. This was done to support connections between students and the community and to inspire students to want to be at school.

Angie DeMaria, a former Teacher at Terrace Middle School in Lakeport and now Principal of Hance Community School, was responsible for implementing this program and overseeing a staff of seven Attendance Liaisons.

“I am proud of my staff and the work they have done to help Lake County students return to school. They not only gave students the resources they need to get to school but also gave students a sense of belonging,” DeMaria said.

This Learning Communities for School Success program is a partnership between LCOE and the Lake County school districts and is grant funded through the California Department of Education (CDE).

To learn more about the importance of attendance, visit our website at