How To

Support Students Who are Truant

Youth Service Bureau Referral for Truancy and Defiance of School Rules

In 2017, state law removed truancy and defiance of school rules as reasons that students could be referred to juvenile court.


In many communities, collaboration between students, families and school staff have helped students who have been truant and/or chronically absent improve their attendance.  In some cases, community-based interventions have also benefited students who need support.


If a student is struggling with regular school attendance, CSDE recommends that schools and families work with the community’s Youth Service Bureau (YSB) to access community-based services. YSBs were designed to facilitate a system of supports and services that are individualized to the needs of the students and their families.

The CSDE, with its partners, has developed a Youth Service Bureau Referral for Truancy and Defiance of School Rules Form to assist districts in developing a system to formally refer students who are truant to the community’s Youth Service Bureau. A Youth Service Bureau Referral Guide is also available to be used as a side-by-side resource to assist in completing the Youth Service Bureau Referral for Defiance of School Rules Form.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) - The Connecticut Youth Services Association has released a Frequently Asked Questions to assist youth service bureaus and schools with implementing the Youth Service Bureau Referral form. The FAQ and contact information for all YSBs can be found on the Connecticut Youth Services Association website.

Catalog of Truancy Intervention Models

The Catalog of Truancy Intervention Models contains promising intervention models that have been implemented in schools and districts in Connecticut and across the country.  The purpose of this catalog is to support the work of districts, schools, and communities in developing and implementing effective strategies to reduce and address truancy and chronic absence in lieu of filing a juvenile court referral.