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Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program


Programs and Funding

Research and Evaluation





The Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program began in 1998 as a cooperative effort of OJJDP, the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools (U.S. Department of Education), and the Executive Office for Weed and Seed (which became the Community Capacity Development Office). The following program sites were selected to implement truancy reduction programs incorporating the following components: community collaboration, public awareness efforts, a continuum of services for families, and successful system reform.
  • Contra Costa County Weed and Seed Office, Contra Costa County, CA.
  • King County Superior Court, King County, WA.
  • Mayor’s Anti-Gang Office, Houston, TX.
  • Project PACT (Partnering to Assess and Counteract Truancy), Wainaie, HI.
  • Safe Streets Campaign Truancy Project, Tacoma, WA.
  • State Attorney's Office, Jacksonville, FL.
  • Suffolk County Probation Department, Suffolk County, NY.
Although each program site targets a distinct population and takes a different approach, all are guided by a strong collaborative partnership that encompasses schools, juvenile justice, social services, and community-based organizations.
Research and EvaluationTop  
The Colorado Foundation for Families and Children is evaluating the Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program. The evaluation has two principal purposes:
  • Document the successes and challenges local communities face when developing a comprehensive, systemwide truancy reduction program.
  • Identify best practices that can be shared with other communities.
All seven sites are participating in evaluation activities, which include tracking youth in attendance, achievement, and attachment. In 2003, the evaluation design was enhanced in three of the sites (Houston, Jacksonville, and King County) to include comparison groups and examine sustained effects. Final evaluation findings are expected in late 2005. Preliminary evaluation results for each site are available at
Research and Evaluation Contact(s)
Colorado Foundation for Families and Children
303 East 17th Avenue, Suite 400
Denver, CO 80203
303-837-8496 (fax) 
 Heather MacGillivary
 Ken Seeley
OJJDP Publication(s)
Evaluation of the Gulfton Truancy Reduction Demonstration Project
OJJDP-Sponsored, January 2006. This report details the evaluation outcomes of two components of the Gulfton Truancy Reduction Demonstration Project: police visits to the homes of truant students and case management for truants. NCJ 249064.
Innovations in Truancy Prevention Practice: An Inventory of Selected Collaborations From Around the United States
OJJDP-Sponsored, 2005. This study used an online database and information obtained from 12 in-depth interviews to identify typical practices of truancy-reduction programs throughout the Nation and determine what court-based program staff believe are promising tactics for reducing truancy. 107 pages. NCJ 212163.
Jacksonville, Florida Case Study: Evidence of Effectiveness in Reducing Truancy
OJJDP-Sponsored, August 2005. This resource reports the results of a six-year evaluation of an OJJDP-funded truancy reduction program in Jacksonville, Florida. 18 pages. NCJ 212167.
Law Enforcement and School Partnership as a Solution to Truancy: Recommendations From Gulfton's Truancy Reduction Program
OJJDP-Sponsored, July 2006. This report presents recommendations from the Gulfton Truancy Reduction Program in Houston, Texas, one of the sites involved in the OJJDP-funded Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program. 5 pages. NCJ 249106.
Lessons Learned From Four Truancy Demonstration Sites
OJJDP-Sponsored, December 2006. This report presents results and lessons learned from four of the seven Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program sites: Contra Costa County/Martinez, CA, Hawaii/Waianae Elementary Schools, Suffolk County New York/Bellport Middle School, and Tacoma, WA/Safe Streets Program & McIlvaigh Middle School. 10 pages. NCJ 249107.
Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention's Evaluation of the Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program: King County, Washington Successfully Reduces Unexcused Absences
OJJDP-Sponsored, October 2006. This report is an outcome evaluation of the King County truancy reduction effort in Washington State, which was funded by OJJDP. NCJ 249065.
Project PACT: Partnering To Assess and Counteract Truancy Program and Student Success Stories
OJJDP-Sponsored, September 2005. This resource describes how Hawaii's Project PACT, part of the OJJDP-funded National Truancy Prevention Demonstration Project, works and provides examples of student successes. NCJ 212161.
Story Behind the Numbers: A Qualitative Evaluation of the Houston, TX Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program
OJJDP-Sponsored, January 2007. This paper presents a summary of findings from three focus groups held to help gauge the effectiveness of the Gulfton Truancy Reduction Demonstration Project in Houston, Texas. Focus groups included: high school and program staff (including police officers), the students receiving the services, and parents of those students. 24 pages. NCJ 249108.
Story Behind the Numbers: A Qualitative Evaluation of the Jacksonville, FL Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program
OJJDP-Sponsored, January 2007. This paper presents findings from an evaluation of the Truancy Interdiction Program in Jacksonville, Florida, one of the Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program sites. 20 pages. NCJ 249109.
The Story Behind the Numbers: A Qualitative Evaluation of the Seattle, WA Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program
OJJDP-Sponsored, January 2007. This paper presents findings from an evaluation of the Truancy Reduction Project, in Seattle, Washington, one of the Truancy Reduction Demonstration Program sites. 22 pages. NCJ 249110.
Tool Kit for Creating Your Own Truancy Reduction Program
Tool Kit, February 2007. Outlines critical components of truancy programs such as family involvement, use of incentives and sanctions, developing a support network, and program evaluation. Available online only. NCJ 217271.
PDF(By Chapter)HTML 
Truancy Case Management Handbook: Advice from the Field
OJJDP-Sponsored, January 2007. This guide is intended to help truancy case managers learn what is working for their colleagues to aid them in improving their own practice. 60 pages. NCJ 249096.

National Center for School Engagement
Provides truancy prevention tools, an annotated bibliography of truancy-related publications, and program descriptions and contact information for National Truancy Reduction Program demonstration sites.