1Directing the Joint State Government Commission to study, in
2consultation with an advisory committee, the issue of truancy
3and school dropout prevention in this Commonwealth.

4WHEREAS, Chronic truancy and school dropout rates continue to
5be critical problems nationally and in this Commonwealth, and
6educators, parents, community leaders and policymakers at all
7levels of government have focused attention on the need to
8address the academic achievement gap and the declining high
9school graduation rate; and

10WHEREAS, Students who have unexcused absences from school and
11become truant are more likely to fail to maintain academic pace
12with their peers and to be at risk of dropping out of school;

14WHEREAS, Research indicates that truancy is a barrier to
15opportunities for future employment success and contributes to
16involvement in drug use, daytime crime and violence; and

1WHEREAS, Adopting court performance measures for children in
2foster care may provide educational stability and success; and

3WHEREAS, Current truancy policy and laws may not apply
4equally to all public schools, as the enforcement standards
5differ for traditional school districts and for charter and
6cyber charter schools; and

7WHEREAS, Current truancy penalties may need further scrutiny
8and revision, as penalties and practices may not be effective at
9curtailing truancy; and

10WHEREAS, The current collection of truancy data may be
11insufficient; and

12WHEREAS, Schools, law enforcement, parents and courts may
13have insufficient authority to deal with truancy issues; and

14WHEREAS, Current detention programs for truants may not be
15effective; therefore be it

16RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives direct the Joint
17State Government Commission to do the following:

18(1) Conduct a comprehensive study of the issues of
19truancy and school dropout prevention in this Commonwealth.

20(2) Establish an advisory committee comprised of
21representatives of the Department of Education, educational
22organizations, the judiciary, district attorneys, law
23enforcement, public organizations involved in truancy issues<-, 
24representatives of county children and youth agencies and 
25juvenile justice agencies and other organizations selected by
26the Joint State Government Commission to consult with the
27Joint State Government Commission in conducting the study;

28and be it further

29RESOLVED, That the study to be conducted by the Joint State
30Government Commission include, but not be limited to, the


2(1) A thorough and comprehensive study of current
3truancy laws and policy.

4(2) Barriers and best practices regarding education
5success and stability.

6(3) Court competencies.

7(4) Data collection.

8(5) Measurement of educational outcomes for children in
9foster care.

10(6) Statutes, best practices and legislative initiatives
11in other states.

12(7) Studies or initiatives promoted by national
13educational advocacy organizations relating to truancy.

14(8) <-Specific enforcement in charter and cyber charter 
15schools be reviewed by charter and cyber charter operatives; 
<-16The manner in which charter and cyber charter schools enforce 
17the truancy laws of this Commonwealth and impediments to 

19and be it further

20RESOLVED, That the Joint State Government Commission hold
21informational meetings to receive testimony from professionals
22or organizations with expertise in truancy and truancy
23prevention; and be it further

24RESOLVED, That the Joint State Government Commission issue a
25report of its findings and recommendations to the House of
26Representatives not later than one year after the date of
27adoption of this resolution.