From EAG News:
DETROIT – The 50,000 students enrolled in the Detroit public school district last year missed a total of 1,539,981 days of school, the equivalent of 30 absences per student.
That’s the average across all students, factoring in those who missed far more days and those who missed few or no days. The figures were obtained from the district in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.
But Detroit Public School officials say those numbers can be misleading if not put into proper context. The district has several different categories for absences and considers many in the total to have been excused. The 1.5 million figure includes days missed due to illness, suspensions, pending expulsions and more.
The Detroit district also has a transient population of students, estimated to be in the hundreds, who registered for school in the next grade but may have moved, according to spokeswoman Michelle Zdrodowski.
“In reality, DPS’ absence rate is approximately 5.5 percent of a student’s enrolled days,” Zdrodowski said.
The district’s median number of student absences for 2014-15 was 8,113 students a day. That means about 16 percent of the student body doesn’t show up on a typical day.
The district had its lowest absenteeism on the two “count days.” The first count day was Oct. 1, 2014, when only 2,580 students were absent, and 48,881 students showed up. That fall count day accounts for 90 percent of the money (known as the state foundation allowance) the district receives from…