SOCSD Launches Show Up for Excellence School Attendance Campaign for October and November

Show Up For Excellence Attendance Campaign in October and November.The Starkville Oktibbeha School District is focusing on the importance of school attendance for the months of October and November with a challenge for students to “Show Up for Excellence.”

The campaign builds on the new and expanded vision of “Expect Excellence Every Day” that Superintendent Eddie Peasant shared to start the school year. 

“Our potential demands that we expect nothing less than excellence of ourselves and our students, and that starts with showing up every day,” said Peasant.   

The goal of the District’s “Show Up For Excellence campaign” is to improve average daily attendance (ADA) which significantly impacts the level of state funding.  The state uses attendance data from the months of October and November to calculate ADA for the year.  Currently, SOCSD is losing about $840,000 annually because of students who are not at school, and the only real way to increase the District’s funding allocation is to increase ADA.  Just a one percent increase in ADA from 95 to 96 percent would result in an increase of about $200,000 for the District at the current funding level. 

As part of the attendance campaign, the District is encouraging parents to follow the 63% rule to help increase ADA and funding. 

“For a student to be counted present, he/she must be in school for at least 63% of the instructional day,” said Peasant.  “Our goal is to make our parents aware of what those time requirements are as they make decisions about when to schedule necessary appointments and when to check their students out of school,” added Peasant. 

Elementary students at West, Sudduth and Henderson Ward Stewart Elementary Schools must arrive no later than 10:20 am, and they must remain at school until the end of the day to be counted present.  Elementary students who arrive for the start of the school day at 7:40 am must remain at school until 12:15 pm to be counted present.  Students can also check out and later return to school for approximately 2.5 hours during the middle of the day and still be counted present. 

The campaign includes incentives to students who show up every day for excellence, and the school with the highest attendance at the end of October will win a school-wide pep rally to celebrate.  The students with perfect attendance will have priority seating for the celebration.  Special celebrity guests will also show up at schools during the months of October and November to encourage and motivate students. 

To kick off the campaign, Dr. Peasant shared a personal message with SOCSD families and asked them to make attendance a priority and commit to show up for excellence.

Dear Parents,

When school began nine weeks ago, I shared a new and expanded vision for our District, “Expect Excellence Every Day,” and I asked you to join me.  Together, we are redefining our #StarkvilleSpark. 

As we prepare to begin the second nine weeks of school, I have a new challenge.  I want to see all of our students at school, on time, every day, and I’m asking for your help.  For the months of October and November, our District is focusing on the importance of attendance, and we’re challenging our students to “Show Up for Excellence.”  Our potential demands that we expect nothing less than excellence of ourselves and our students, and that starts with showing up every day. 

The most important reason for your child to be at school every day is his/her academic success, but there is another reason that is critical to our District’s financial stability.  Our District is losing about $840,000 annually because of students who are not at school.  That’s because state funding for Mississippi school districts is largely based on our average daily attendance (ADA), and the only real way to increase our funding allocation is to increase our ADA.  The state uses attendance from the months of October and November to calculate our ADA for the year.  Just a one percent increase in ADA from 95 to 96 percent would result in an increase of about $200,000 for our District at the current funding level. 

Here’s how you can help us increase our ADA and our funding:  Follow the 63% rule.  For your child to be counted present, he/she must be at school for 63% of the instructional day.  That means our elementary students at West, Sudduth and Henderson Ward Stewart Elementary Schools must arrive no later than 10:20 am, and they must remain at school until the end of the day to be counted present.  Elementary students who arrive for the start of the school day at 7:40 am must remain at school until 12:15 pm to be counted present.  Your child can also check out and later return to school for approximately 2.5 hours during the middle of the day if necessary and still be counted present.  Please consider the 63% rule as you schedule required appointments for your children.   

We’re excited about attendance, and we want you and your child to be as well!  Each school is offering incentives to students who show up every day for excellence, and the school with the highest attendance at the end of October will win a school-wide pep rally to celebrate.  The students with perfect attendance will have priority seating for the celebration.  We also have some special celebrity guests who will show up at our schools during the months of October and November to encourage and motivate our students. 

I want our students to be at school all day, every day.  When your child is not at school, we miss him/her.  Our District misses out on hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding.  Our classrooms miss out on the #StarkvilleSpark only your child can bring every day.  And your child misses out on something amazing:  excellence.  We demonstrate our unwavering commitment to excellence when we show up every day.  Make your child’s attendance a priority and commit with me to show up for excellence.

Expect excellence and show up for it every day!

Sincerely,

Eddie Peasant
Superintendent

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