Karen Webber, director of OSI-Baltimore’s education and youth development program, appeared Monday on WYPR’s Midday with Sheilah Kast to talk about chronic absenteeism in city schools. Webber, a former teacher and school principal, recently wrote an essay called “The Importance of Student Attendance” on OSI-Baltimore’s website.
Webber emphasized the importance of a positive school climate in encouraging attendance. “In school as in everything else, students need to know that they’re coming for something,” she said during the discussion. “The older a student is, the more likely they are to vote with their feet. If it’s a welcoming environment in which they’re getting what they need, they come to school and they stay. if it’s not, they don’t come to school.”