DAN CEARNS, The Standard

DURHAM: The Durham District School Board (DDSB) feels they are trending in the right direction in terms of absence data.

At a Standing Committee meeting, on Monday, May 2nd, Director of Education Norah Marsh provided an update on staff absences.

“Some positive news on that front. We’re seeing approximately a decline in absenteeism rates. Approximately five percent [decline] on the part of staff,” Ms. Marsh told trustees.

She also stated, the board is seeing some positive data about student absences as well. “We have seen a decline in terms of the number of absences. April 11th to 14th was the highest week since January, where we saw an average of 13,500 absences per day. Last week, we were down to approximately 11,600, on average per day. So, [we are] definitely seeing a decline in that, which is positive news for school operations.”

Absence data has become more prominent since the Ontario government announced a change to COVID-19 testing protocols early this year.