Administration kicks off Attendance Awareness Month


Sophia McKinney

Jorie Depalma is one of the head administrators for this project. She has been sending out emails and posting different attendance awareness posters around the building to promote this movement.

SHS currently holds the lowest attendance rate in Perry Township, 93%. This month is Attendance Awareness Month and administration hopes to boost the school attendance rate. 

“I feel like the first step to increasing our attendance is being aware of it,” social worker Jorie Depalma said. 

Administrators at SHS are determined to stress the importance of regular school attendance. Principal Brian Knight believes that simply being at school is a step forward to being successful. He thinks that it’s important not to sacrifice valuable time at school or else students will fall behind in their classes. 

“Sometimes the easiest way to do well in school is to just be here, and if you struggle in school and then you miss a bunch of days, that can sometimes build up a mountain of work or makeup work that becomes overwhelming for students,” Knight said. 

 Sophomore Audra Barclay believes that not showing up to school will lead to makeup work, and this can also affect students’ learning growth in their classes. 

  “It’s important to keep up with all of your classes, and if you don’t show up to school, it hinders your ability to learn and improve in your classes,” Barclay said. 

According to Attendance Works, the theme for Attendance Awareness Month this year is “we all belong in school.” 

In order to make this theme loud and clear, Depalma has planned to set up many activities to honor and promote Attendance Awareness Month. She started this movement  at the beginning of the year by adding graphics, regarding the importance of school attendance, to the weekly emails that go out to students and parents. 

“We are using this month to bring more awareness and education to our school and community about the importance of school attendance,” Depalma said. 

IPass is a useful way in spreading the word about good school attendance,” Ashcraft said.

 Depalma and Ashcraft have been planning to share some iPass lessons that will inform students about the importance of attendance. They also plan to set attendance goals within these lessons. 

“We are hoping to do an ipass lesson or 2 and start to really also promote our school daily attendance rate and set and promote some daily attendance rate goals,” Depalma said. 

The Snapchat code being used during this month. Depalma will be posting different things about attendance and have different activities to show why attendance should matter to students.

Depalma has also created a Snapchat for SHS students and families that is related to school attendance. She plans to make it very interactive, so students will be motivated to start good attendance habits. Students should expect to see some challenges for students and families posted on this Snapchat. Depalma is also willing to reward the students at SHS if they reach a certain attendance goal. 

“We are going to be doing some really cool things on Snapchat to promote attendance and engage students, like some different challenges, some scavenger hunts, some different incentives such as potentially playing music during passing periods if we meet our attendance goal for that week and students are going to be able to vote on the songs that are played every Friday,” Depalma said. 

Following the numerous attendance activities, a new Attendance Success Coach, Danette Davis, will be starting her new job at SHS this month. Sophomore Van Hruaii has high hopes for Danette Davis and her eagerness in teaching students the significance of attendance. 

“I think this will improve students’ attendance because the new coach will motivate them and teach them why attendance is so important,” Hruaii said. 

As administration is continuously adding more resources, it is up to the students at SHS to begin the progress. 

“I just want to encourage students that this school is what we make it and if they want to make this school a better place, part of that is being here,” Ashcraft said.