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Synopsis

Drawing on an extensive study of persistent absentees, their families and their schools, David Galloway explores the prevalence of absence from schools and the underlying causes. He shows that a majority of poor attendees remain at home with their parents' knowledge, and often with their consent, and argues that the disadvantaged circumstances of many of the families concerned is of little relevance to teachers unless they also recognize how the pupils and their families view what the school has to offer. Using his experience as a teacher, educational psychologist and researcher, he demonstrates that school attendance cannot be usefully considered in isolation from the life and work of the school as a whole.

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