I found this article in the Daily Mail. I don’t post much in the way of newspaper articles. They tend to go the way of junk science, but this article made a good argument. As few as three absences from school can have a significant impact on student achievement on standardized tests. This same correlation might be extended to classroom assessments and academic progress.
A note to consider: correlation does not necessarily mean causation. There are multiple complexities in the lives of the students at the center of this study. Still, the point is a good one. The academic calendar is a deliberate mechanism designed to build understanding. Interruptions to plans, sequence and content delivery can and will result in diminished student achievement.
Enjoy the story.
Preus, B. (2012) Authentic Instruction for 21st Century Learning: Higher Order Thinking in an Inclusive School. American Secondary Education. 40.(3) P 59-79.