OverviewThe Learner Engagement and Attendance Program is a research-based home visiting program that identifies and partners with families to improve student attendance and family engagement.
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In April 2021, the CSDE and Governor Ned Lamont launched LEAP to address student absenteeism and disengagement from school due to the COVID-19 pandemic. LEAP targeted 15 school districts across Connecticut. Through the program, home visitors connect directly with families and students to establish trusting relationships, help return them to a more regular form of school attendance, and assist with placement in summer, after school, and learning programs.
Learn more about the LEAP story and lessons learned in The LEAP Effect, Taking a Systemic Approach to Improving Attendance & Engagement, September 23, 2023. Written in collaboration with Attendance Works, EdAdvance, and CREC.CCERC Evaluation of LEAP
Key Highlights in the LEAP Report
- For most students examined in this study, attendance rates increased by four percentage points in the month immediately following the first LEAP visit. Attendance rates then continued to rise in subsequent months, reaching an average increase of approximately seven percentage points for students served in the summer of 2021 and nearly 15 percentage points for students served during the 2021-22 school year after 6 months. These effects were most noticeable in the Hartford School District.
- Nine months after the first LEAP visit, students in grades PK – 5 experienced approximately an eight-percentage point increase in attendance. Students in grades 6-12 experienced approximately a sixteen-percentage point increase in attendance rates relative to similar students who were not served over the same time period, suggesting that the impact of LEAP was significantly larger in later grades.
- Results did not differ based on the type of personnel, school or community-based, conducting a LEAP home visit. Nine months after the initial LEAP visit, attendance rates increased by between approximately 15 and 20 percentage points regardless of who conducted the visit.
- LEAP visits that occurred at a student’s home or a student’s school had significantly larger impacts on attendance than LEAP visits that occurred virtually or on the phone.
Video! Watch a documentary promotional video about LEAP and its success! by the Collaborative for Student Success. Over 1 million views!
Read more about LEAP:
- How Connecticut’s Home Visit Program Improved Chronic Absenteeism – Ed Note (ecs.org)
- Forbes: Connecticut’s Funding What Works in Education. They Can Prove It
- Education Week: This State Set Up a Program to Reduce Chronic Absences. It Worked
- CT Examiner: Chronic School Absenteeism Shows Sharp Decline After Home Visitation Program
- WFSB.com: Home Visits Helped Improve Student Attendance in Schools, New Report Says
- WTNH.com: New Study Shows Connecticut Educators Visiting Students Decreased Chronic Absenteeism
- CTPUBLIC.org: Researchers Say In-home Visits Boost School Attendance for Chronically Absent Students
- NY Times: The Key to Getting Students Back in Classrooms? Establishing Connections
- FutureEd, Georgetown University, How Home Visits Helped Connecticut Cut Student Absenteeism - FutureEd (future-ed.org)
- Getting students back in class: State’s LEAP effort is targeting 15 large school districts | Republican-American (rep-am.com)
Fourteen school districts are currently funded to participate in LEAP:
The Capitol Region Education Council (CREC)
Districts interested in LEAP 101 training on the LEAP approach to engaging families and improving student attendance can contact Francisco Baires at the CT Home Visiting Hub at CREC.
For additional resources on attendance and engagement, visit the CSDE Chronic Absence webpage.