Students deal with numerous issues outside of the classroom that affect their academic performance. Regularly dealing with societal issues such as poverty, homelessness, hunger, bullying, suicide and drug use may prevent a child from learning to his or her full potential. Barriers to student achievement may exist in a child's school and within the home. Many of these problems can be addressed with awareness and action, parental involvement or community support.The resources listed below are intended to assist districts in helping their students.
Resources for the following categories are found below.
Emotional, physical and mental health
This category includes chronic illness, chronic absenteeism, mental health issues, bullying and the opioid epidemic impact on families/students
- Understanding the Factors Contributing to Chronic Absence in Your School - Includes a matrix to help analyze factors that contribute to chronic absence, as well as what assets might help in addressing the issue.
- Handout on Breaking Barriers to Attendance - Resource to help educators identify the likely causes of absenteeism for a student who is chronically absent in their class. Once causes for absence are known, district leaders can begin to collaborate with community leaders to develop supports.
- Chronic Elementary Absenteeism - A Problem Hidden in Plain Sight - A research brief from Attendance Works and Child & Family Policy Center.
- Addressing Elementary Chronic Absenteeism - Hanover Research - A research brief from Hanover Research that outlines strategies schools and communities can implement to address chronic absenteeism in the early years of schooling.
- Best Practices for Improving Attendance in Secondary Schools - Hanover Research (2016) examines research- based strategies for addressing truancy in middle and high schools. The report also profiles three school districts who have been successful at improving student attendance
- Ohio's Resource Guide to Reduce Chronic Absenteeism - Ohio Department of Education (2017)
- Students on Board - a bullying resource and tool kit with reports, articles, videos, OSBA anti-bullying policy guidance and other information aimed at keeping kids safe and free from bullying in school.
- Suicide prevention resources - According to the Centers for Disease Control, suicide is the third leading cause of death among persons aged 10-14 and the second among persons aged 15-34 years. To assist school districts in supporting students and families, OSBA has compiled research-based information regarding student suicide.
This category includes food insecurity, childcare access, learning resource access and violence in communities with high poverty
- Failure is Not an Option - In spite of high poverty, tight budgets, sub-optimal parent participation and ill preparation, there are schools that produce extraordinary students and remarkable stories of success. What makes these schools work so well, and can it be replicated in others? Public Agenda spoke to principals, teachers, students and parents at nine of Ohio's high-poverty, high-achieving schools.
- Out of the Loop - Center for Public Education (2018) Rural students and the schools they attend receive little attention in either policy or academia. No one seeks to minimize the problems of rural schools. But, at least from a national perspective, the unique needs of rural education are often obscured by their urban and suburban counterparts. However, such a metropolitan-centric attitude neglects a significant portion of the student population.
- Smarter investment can help ease looming education crisis: Shifting demographics, poverty pose challenges - A policy and planning analyst from Ohio State University's Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity (2017) focuses on the crisis of poverty and its impact on the education of children of color.
Diversity and Family Engagement
This category includes parent and family involvement
- Best Practices in Engaging Diverse Families - Hanover Research (2016) examines literature and case studies on engaging diverse families in public, K12 settings. It focuses in particular on the experiences and needs of large, urban public school districts, and on the experiences and needs of African-American and Hispanic families.
- Best Practices in Measuring Parent Engagement - Hanover Research (2016) summarizes the literature on best practices in measuring parent and family engagement.
- Diverse student learning: In the public schools context, however, diversity and inclusion encompasses a much wider variety of students that are protected by certain legal requirements, including economically disadvantaged students, foster children, homelessness, individuals with disabilities, LGBT students, pregnant and parenting teens and racial, ethnic or religious minorities.