Educators warn that attendance habits follow a child through education

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FRESNO, Calif. -- Charity Fontes is entering kindergarten this year. She's well prepared and ready to learn.

"My children are all very outgoing so they're eager to start {school}," said Amber Fontes, Charity's mom, who prepares all of her children for kindergarten with preschool.

She has instilled good study habits and, more importantly, attendance at a young age. And studies show by starting them off on the right foot, it'll have a lasting effect.

"Attendance, good, strong, perfect attendance in kindergarten is more important than in any other grade because you're establishing critical habits," said Dr. Michele Cantwell-Copher, the Administer for Educational Services for Fresno County Office of Education.

Through tracked attendance, records shows parents often take kids out of kindergarten for long periods of time. They'll even miss the first week of school for a late summer vacation. What they may not realize is that bad habits are forming.

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