For Communities

North Lawndale Connections

Providing Support and Resources to Reduce Chronic Absenteeism in North Lawndale

North Lawndale Community Connections is a dedicated program at IAFC committed to minimizing chronic absenteeism among children in preschool through third grade in North Lawndale schools. IAFC has been partnering with the Steans Family Foundation’s North Lawndale READS initiative since 2015, a comprehensive effort to bridge the literacy gap for North Lawndale students by third grade.

Through fostering strong connections with families, children, schools, and community organizations, Community Connections strives to tackle the grade-level literacy gap by providing holistic support to address chronic absenteeism issues in elementary schools.

Read the full program details

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Program Approach

Our program approach includes Four Core Strategies:

  1. Authentic family engagement through intensive family supports and services.
  2. Fostering community partnerships to provide families with holistic and comprehensive supports that address their basic needs.
  3. Building the school leaders’ and staff’s capacity to foster a positive culture of attendance and family engagement.
  4. Using data to identify chronically absent students for continuous quality improvements.
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Partner Schools

  • Sumner Math and Science Academy
  • Daniel Webster Elementary School
  • Joseph Kellman Elementary School
  • Legacy Charter School
  • Chalmers School of Excellence
  • Johnson School of Excellence

North Lawndale Program Results

Elementary schools in North Lawndale have seen improvements in attendance for students participating in the program. Data shows that working with students over time has positively impacted students and created long-term stability.

The results of our approach have been tremendously successful with a proven and significant impact on families and on children’s learning. Some of our key successes include:

  • Improvement of overall attendance for students who have been on the caseload for more than two years.
  • Working with students over time has positively impacted students and created long-term stability. This work helps families and students to change their mindsets, instill good attendance behaviors, and address family barriers to school attendance.

View North Lawndale Community Connections Data

Class selfie in an elementary school. Kids taking a picture together in a co-ed school. Group of elementary school children feeling excited to be back at school.

Have Questions? Get Answers.

FOr more information, email:

Rarzail Jones

Associate Director of Community Connections

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