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The Montgomery County's
State's Attorney's Office
TRUANCY PREVENTION PROGRAM

OUR STORY

In 2010, the State’s Attorney for Montgomery County, MD, Mr. John McCarthy, was reading an article in the Baltimore Sun about an intervention program called the Truancy Court Program operated by the University of Baltimore School of Law.  In that article, Barbara Babb, the Director of the Sayra and Neil Meyerhoff Center for Families, Children and the Courts expressed her interest in wanting to expand the Truancy Court Program to Montgomery County. Mr. McCarthy reached out to her to ask who in Montgomery County she has connected with to implement the Truancy Court Program. Mr. McCarthy was the first Montgomery County that she spoke with at that time. Within a matter of months, and through federal funding secured by Senator Barbara Mikulski in 2009, the Truancy Court Program was implemented in spring 2010 at Neelsville Middle School and Francis Scott Key Middle School.  

OUR MISSION

The Truancy Prevention Program is an early intervention program. Its mission is to improve attendance of middle school children in Montgomery County Public schools by discovering the root causes of truancy, and assisting students and their families with issues that impact attendance.  

OUR APPROACH

  • Confronting School Absenteeism

The Truancy Prevention Program confronts school absenteeism by addressing academic, school, personal, and family-related factors.  It is a voluntary and supportive program designed to keep children in school and families out of court. 

  • Improving Attitude on Education

The Truancy Prevention Program aims to improve attitude of students on education by cultivating a supportive and trusting environment that will eventually build a productive relationship between the family, the school and the program team. 

  • Helping to Achieve Full Potential

The Truancy Prevention Program gives special attention to attendance and academic needs of students to help them achieve their full potential.  After School Tutoring in small group setting is offered to students in some partner schools, to provide academic skills support in English, literacy, mathematics, science, and social studies. 

  • Providing Individualized Goal Setting and Mentoring 

The Truancy Prevention Program helps students identify and understand their areas of difficulty.  It provides individualized goal-setting, academic counseling and mentoring.

CURRENTLY

  • The Truancy Prevention Program began in 2010 starting at two middle schools and has served 19 middle schools across Montgomery County since that time. Thanks to the collaboration of the County Council, Montgomery County Public Middle School System, MCPS Principals, MCPS Administrators, MCPS School Counselors, MCPS Pupil Personnel Workers, Montgomery County Police Department, and our community volunteers. Currently the Truancy Prevention Program is serving 18 middle schools, with intentions to expand to a total of 20 middle schools in January 2018.

RESULTS

  • Through participation in the Truancy Prevention Program, the student participants make noticeable improvement on students’ attendance, academics, and attitude toward school. During the 2017-2017 school year, there were over 300 families served in the Truancy Prevention Program. There were 245 students that made tremendous improvement in reducing their truancy while participating in the Truancy Prevention Program. Furthermore, 175 students successfully graduated from the Truancy Prevention Program by reducing their truancy by 60% or more. The student graduates were honored during the culminating ceremony that was held in the Montgomery County Circuit Courthouse where State’s Attorney John McCarthy presided. Over 200 attendees witnessed the momentous occasion for the students.
  • According to a University of Baltimore Study and a University of Maryland School of Public Policy Study, both studies show that approximately 67% of the students typically go on to continue to reduce their unexcused absences a month and semester after they completed the program.

Volunteer Recruitment

  • Through the partnership of AmeriCorps Volunteer Maryland, the State’s Attorney’s Office was able to develop a sustainable volunteer program designed specifically for the Truancy Prevention Program. Through the great support of the volunteers, the Truancy Prevention Program has been able to expand to more schools and meet the needs of students across Montgomery County.  In school year 2013-2014 the Truancy Prevention Program was in 10 middle schools. Now in 2017-2018 school year, the Truancy Prevention Program is in 18 middle schools and is slated to be in a total of 20 middle schools by January 2018.
  • The State’s Attorney’s Office has made tremendous strides to grow volunteer capacity for the Truancy Prevention Program. The AmeriCorps Volunteer Maryland Coordinator, now full-time Volunteer Coordinator, has recruited volunteers that range from adjunct professors, former educators, doctors, lawyers University of Shady Grove undergraduate students, and Montgomery College students. The Truancy Prevention Program utilized the support of 60 community members serving as Truancy Facilitators, Site Coordinators, Mentors, and Tutors.

TUTORING

  • Additionally, the Truancy Prevention Program launched its first ever tutoring component in four middle schools for the spring 2016 term with the help of our Volunteer Maryland Coordinator. A unique venture for a prosecuting office to undertake, with the idea of engaging students in a positive way.

 

 

If you have the skills to provide support, guidance, and motivation; 

If you can make time to participate in a meaningful collaborative problem-solving effort;

If you are interested to understand and help address the issues affecting attendance, academics, and behavior --

 
We Invite You to Help Solve Truancy in Montgomery County.
         VOLUNTEER TODAY!
 
                                  TLZ - The Learning Zone Tutoring Program

 

TOGETHER, WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.   

 

How to Volunteer with us

Find your Volunteer Opportunity

Download the Volunteer Application

Complete an application online

       

Read about what we have done in recent past:

  Newsletter (March 2016)

  Newsletter  (June 2016)

  Newsletter (January 2017)

  Newsletter (June 2017)

 

 

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