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Glenella School Attendance Program March 8, 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "Glenella School Attendance Program March 8, 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 Glenella School Attendance Program March 8, 2013

2 “When stakeholders believe and understand the importance of attending school, attendance will increase.” 2011 video

3 Presentation Outline Objectives Background Information Our Program Next Steps

4 Objectives Increase parent knowledge about the importance of attendance Ensure the needs of at risk students are acknowledged, and addressed, so they are successful in attending school regularly To increase student attendance at Glenella School to 90% by June, 2013

5 Background Information K-12 School, with 125 students, 9 teaching staff, 6 EA’s, and 4 support staff Students bused to Glenella from the neighboring communities of Kelwood, Riding Mountain and Amaranth Overall student absenteeism was high because parents put non-essential appointments and/or activities at a higher priority than school attendance

6 There were some students living in difficult situations who were not engaged in their education. They do not have all their basic needs, such as lunch, being met. These basic needs are required for consistent attendance and engagement at school 13 out of 125 students are town students, so busing and weather can often be an issue

7 Our School High School End Elementary End

8 Our Perfect Attendance Program C.F.S./Multiagency School Culture Increase Parent Knowledge Office Follow-up

9 Office Follow-Up We use a attendance tracking program called Maplewood, and the secretary follows-up with missing students by 9:30 in the morning Most parents are good at calling/sending notes to the school prior to the start of the day to explain absences

10 Principal follows-up with phone calls to families of students with multiple absences Talking to an actual person makes it difficult to have unexplained absences Since the program has started, parents are even more diligent about communicating with the school than before

11 Turtle River School Division policy states the following… That after three absences, a verbal warning is given to the student After five absences, a letter is mailed home After eight absences, a second letter is sent If a child misses more that 20% of school in a month, a truancy letter is sent from the school and the division office

12 Increasing Parent Knowledge The following initiatives were taken to improve stakeholder knowledge… Placemats Magnets Attendance policy is periodically printed in newsletter, and it is in their student handbook Meetings with P.A.C. Parent survey

13 The stakeholder survey (parents/staff/students) from the first year was used to help plan for the second year of the program. “If you could change one thing about the Glenella School Perfect Attendance Program, what would it be?” Exclude medical absences from the “prizing”. The whole thing shouldn’t be needed – attendance is a parent’s responsibility. Give out school supplies – we pay for enough stuff as it is now. So far, so good! I think this is a great idea – don’t change anything. Send us info about how much improvement has been seen. There needs to be more fairness in how the prizes are awarded. Only reward the truly “perfect” attenders. More choices for the prizes.

14 School Culture To make Glenella School an inviting, safe and supportive place for all students, including at risk students, we offer the following programs… Developed an active student council Offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities Scheduled open gym at noon hour daily Healthy snack program K-12 school activities (gym riots/spirit weeks/winter activity days, etc.) Strive for academic success for all Monthly attendance celebration assemblies

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16 C.F.S./Multiagency In extreme cases, principal follows through with other agencies to get advice and support This has only occurred once in this school year

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19 Advantages Student, parent and community awareness of the importance of regular school attendance Students earn prizes for positive behavior and celebrate their success

20 Students get full advantage of learning opportunities by being in school Improved communication between school and home relating to attendance and other issues Improved attendance

21 Challenges Rural location causes travel time for services such as medical, dental, and orthodontist appointments Farm related activities can cause absences When there is an illness outbreak, our small population can be hit hard

22 Finding an acceptable definition of regular attendance Parents of chronic non-attendees are complacent about program Finding appropriate prizes for K-12 age group

23 Our data is not consistent from year to year because of changes in administration and community/staff input Somewhat transient population results in fluctuating student numbers, and new students aren’t invested in the program

24 Next Steps What to do when program ends and prizes either disappear or become less attractive Will continue to communicate the importance attendance to stakeholders Continued support from P.A.C. Continue our healthy snack program

25 Attendance interview video by Grade 10 class Questions and Comments?

26 Contact Information Glenella School Jennifer Sellman - Principal


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