How do you track school attendance and missed work days? 

This data is tracked both by family member survey and school system data.  In our current Healthy Homes technical Study, the outside evaluation of school data is being conducted by the university of Baltimore as well as by the UMBC Hilltop Center.

We are just beginning to track school attendance through a local project called "seeding success" whereby, with informed consent of our parents, we receive the official record of attendance for each child over the past several years.   This process does not specify the reason for the absence, but is official data.  We are in the process of accessing this data now.

How do you deal with asking people about missed school when the six month timeframe includes all the summer vacation months?

We accomodate for summer or holidays in our analysis. 

How do you do that?

That is done by algorithm through data analysis by our actuarial and evaluation teams. Independent from us.

When I ran statistics for the Lung Association in New York, I modified event data by the number of available school days in a month to calculate rates.  If no school days, no data, if holidays (e.g. December), fewer days in denominator, etc.

Yes, that approach is probably the best one can do. Thanks.