Community Partnership

Project START

Initiative Description: A quasi-experimental design was used to compare outcomes for truants drawn from three categories of intervention intensity (i.e., no court referral, one-dimensional court referral, and multidimensional court referral with community-based services) and matched on baseline rates of absenteeism and demographics.

This truancy intervention included a comprehensive program that imparts a continuum of services and sanctions, which are viewed as necessary to address this social problem.

Study Results: Truancy levels remained highand unchanged for non referred truants throughout the study. Both court groups showed a significant drop in absences 30 days post-court. During the subsequent 30-day period, the community-based court maintained the reduced rates, while the traditional court group showed higher truancy levels than the community-based court group. At one year follow-up, the community-based court group continued to show significantly lower levels of unexcused absence compared to the other two experimental groups.

Reference: Fantuzzo, J. , Grim, S. and Hazan, H. (2005), Project start: An evaluation of a community‐wide school‐based intervention to reduce truancy. Psychol. Schs., 42: 657-667. doi:10.1002/pits.20103

Level of Evidence: 3 out of 5 stars Very Good