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An Evaluation of the Implementation and Enforcement of Washington D.C.’s Truancy Policy Open Access

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A study with 15 grade 9-12 District of Columbia public high schools was designed to explore the effectiveness of the implementation and enforcement of Washington D.C.’s truancy policy, which went into effect in January 2013. Three variables are explored as measures of effectiveness: (a) truancy rates, (b) truancy court referrals, and (c) graduation rates. Support was found for positive improvements in D.C. public high schools in regards to decreasing truancy rates and increasing graduation rates since the inauguration of the latest truancy policy. However, support improvement was also limited, as petitioned truancy court referrals have increased since the law’s enactment. In terms of measuring enforcement, the intervention step of conducting a SST meeting was evaluated. The results indicated that schools are not fully enforcing the city’s truancy policy.

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