Every Day Counts!

Every Day Counts! is a citywide effort initiated by Mayor Bowser to ensure every student attends school every day. Missing just two days of school a month can increase a student’s risk of academic failure.

Congratulations to the public charter schools that had the highest attendance rates in SY 2016-17:

  • Friendship PCS Online – 99.8%
  • Center City PCS — Brightwood – 97%
  • Ideal Academy PCS – 96.6%
  • Washington Latin PCS — Middle School – 96.1%
  • Hope Community PCS — Tolson – 96.1%
  • Hope Community — Lamond – 96%
  • E.L. Haynes PCS — Middle School – 95.9%
  • Elsie Whitlow Stokes PCS – 95.9%
  • Washington Yu Ying PCS – 95.7%
  • BASIS DC – 95.7%
  • Latin American Montessori Bilingual – 95.3%
  • Friendship PCS — Woodridge Middle School – 95.2%

We asked these schools what their secret is to ensuring high attendance. Here’s what they had to say: 

Center City PCS — Brightwood
We are so proud of our Center City Brightwood Bulldogs and their parents' efforts to get to school every day and on time. Our attendance is a reflection of our school motto - "One Band, One Sound." Our teachers and staff members frequently remind students of the importance of coming to school daily and promptly. We partner with parents through letters, phone calls, wake up calls, robo calls, home visits and attendance trackers. Attendance meetings are held two times a week in order to monitor absent and tardy data and create plans to work with parents and students to come to school. All at Center City PCS Brightwood work hard to create a welcoming and inviting school community. Students are greeted with hugs, high fives and smiles in the morning and upbeat music to set a positive tone for the day. Every day we attempt to meet our goal of creating a vibrant learning community where students are eager to attend. Our attendance thus far is a reflection of every "band member" doing their part to support student attendance.

Hope Community PCS — Lamond and Tolson
The Hope Community PCS team is committed to ensuring that all scholars succeed and diligently communicate to families the importance of their child attending school every day. Before the start of school year, classroom teachers call families to confirm that they understand when school day begins, ends, and the importance attendance has on the academic success of their child. 

E.L. Haynes PCS - Middle School
At E.L. Haynes Middle School we seek to create a school where students, teachers, and families build the school culture and climate together. We have implemented an advisory system that focuses on ensuring that students have a deep and meaningful relationship with at least one trusted adult in the building. In addition, students have the opportunity to discuss and act on issues of inequity in these sessions. Lastly, we are increasing student agency by creating a space for them to design many of our school culture incentives that occur throughout the year.

Elsie Whitlow Stokes PCS
We believe our high attendance rate is due to two main factors: positive school climate, and strong family engagement. Stokes School is a place that scholars are excited to come to school each day. We work hard to build strong relationships with our scholars’ families through home visits and ongoing communication. The caring environment that our teachers create makes coming to school something to look forward to. 

BASIS DC is very proud of its students for coming to school every day ready to learn. Our high attendance rates are the result of a variety of factors, from successful morning programs to meaningful lessons in every class to initiatives that create a safe and welcoming environment for all students. For example, before school begins at 8:45 am, we offer Early Bird, which is a supervised space for students to eat school-provided breakfast, study for tests, hang out with friends, and work on group projects. Some of our teachers also hold morning Student Hours, which incentivize students to come to school early to get one-on-one support from content experts. We also work hard to ensure that BASIS DC is a place all students want to be, which we accomplish through Restorative Justice circles, school spirit events, diversity programming, and social-emotional curricula. Most importantly, we are a tight-knit community, which means when a student is absent, teachers, peers, and administrators check-in to see if everything is ok. In these ways and others, we support each and every student in coming to school each and every day!

Friendship- Woodridge Middle School
In efforts to increase attendance rates at Friendship PCS — Woodridge Middle School, we launched the “Your Attendance Matters” campaign. The purpose of “Your Attendance Matters” campaign is to increase student achievement and maintain the welcoming school improvement we have fostered over the years; while also increasing scholar intrinsic motivation for learning. Your Attendance Matters campaign implements incentives and attendance competitions to show scholars we appreciate their investment in their learning.  Woodridge expressed appreciation by implementing incentives (e.g. Homework passes, extended recess time, pizza parties). We also continue to address attendance concerns promptly by implementing the Friendship Public Charter School attendance policy with fidelity. We are committed to our vision to ensure that all of our scholars are equipped with the academic and social competencies to get to and through college. 

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