Stepping Up For Kids In School

More than a quarter of Colorado students were chronically absent from school last year, meaning they missed 10% or more of the school year.1 While this is an improvement from the previous year, it is a worrisome trend, especially as students are struggling to get back on track with academic performance following the height of the pandemic. The chronic absenteeism rates are even more alarming for children and youth with additional challenges:


60% of children experiencing homelessness, 43% of children living in poverty, 43% of migrant students, 40% of students learning English as a second language, 39% of students with special needs


The high rate of chronic absenteeism has resulted in an increase in truancy filings in the 17th Judicial District. This led Magistrate Lord-Blegen to request the support of CASA Volunteers on truancy cases, and we have agreed to step up to meet this need. She states:

“We are so excited to have CASA working with our truancy cases. They are quickly building relationships with our families and children. I am so impressed with the depth of information I am receiving in these cases. I know that our children will really benefit educationally from this fantastic resource!”

While our organization will maintain dedication to the core service of dependency and neglect cases, a select group of Volunteer Advocates will receive specialized training to take on truancy cases. In this capacity, they will play a crucial role in identifying obstacles to students’ educational progress, reporting these issues to the court, and actively participating in the process of finding effective solutions for both the students and their families.

1Breunlin, E. (2023, October 4). More than a quarter of Colorado students were chronically absent from school last year. The Colorado Sun.