by S. Purdom
MISD National Walk To School Day and Statewide High Attendance Day Wednesday
Murray, Ky., Sept. 2017--------Murray Independent School District will be supporting Kentucky’s statewide “High Attendance Day,” Wednesday Sept. 20 at each of their respective schools (Murray Elementary, Murray Middle and Murray High). To support high attendance day, National Walk to School Day will be held in conjunction with high attendance day.
Students and families are encouraged to walk from their homes to school, while all Murray Middle School students are invited to walk from the U.S. Bank location on Main St or from the town square near New Life Christian bookstore. Students may be dropped off at these two locations beginning at 7 a.m. and the walk will begin starting at 7:30 a.m. Members of the Murray High School Drum Line will lead students in the walk from the bank location. Traffic will temporary be stopped on Main Street between the bank and the school for the duration of the walk.
In conjunction with this event, this year’s annual state-wide High Attendance Day has been slated with an array of incentives and activities through-out the Murray Independent School District.
Plans are being made at Murray Elementary, Murray Middle and Murray High school in of the High Attendance Day sponsored by The Kentucky Directors of Pupil Personnel. Each MISD respective school will offer competition and incentives to reward students for their attendance. Each year the state provides Kentucky school with a date that is deemed Statewide High Attendance Day. All schools in Kentucky are in competition with each other to have the greatest percentage of students present that day. On High Attendance Day elementary, middle, or high schools may compete in small school or large school categories. Awards will be determined statewide based on each individual school’s performance, regardless of its district’s performance. The school in each category with the highest percentage attendance for that day will be awarded $500.
Just last year, Murray Middle School was recognized as the Region 1 Middle School Winner, prior to the MMS was the top Kentucky middle school in the large middle school division for highest attendance for the 2015 academic year. Also named a regional winner in 2014 and being the 2012 state and regional high attendance recipient, Murray Middle School has an array of activities planned this year.
Teresa Butler, MMS attendance clerk, said the stellar test scores achieved by MMS students is complimented by their state-wide high attendance. Butler said MMS promotes attendance each and every day, while preparing students for the real world when entering college, military, technical school or the work force. “This is a day when you celebrate students attendance and achievement at school. It is a day when all students are recognized for their attendance efforts,” she explained. “Students cannot gain academic knowledge if they are not in attendance; it is so important for students to be at school every day. Students can pick up homework that they missed, but they cannot replace the amount of learning inside the classroom.”
A special assembly will be held in the MMS gym at 2 p.m. During the assembly, an array of prizes from community businesses will be given to students to promote high attendance. Murray Elementary School will sponsor HATDay-High Attendance Tiger Day. MES students may wear pajamas and will get to clip up when they come to school on time. “Attendance is extremely important each and every day, and every minute,” Denise Whitaker, MES principal said. “We are glad our state assists in motivating our students to have perfect attendance.”
Jane Ann Turner, Murray High School The Den Youth Service Center Coordinator, said a free cappuccino bar will be set up in the lunch room from 7:30-8 a.m. to encourage early arrival and preparedness for school.
Teresa Speed, MHS principal said every day is considered high attendance day. “However, we are excited about rewarding our students for all their efforts to be at school every day,” she said.
Schools throughout Kentucky will compete for the highest average student attendance Wednesday. The categories of competitions will include elementary, middle and high schools. Winning schools will be announced at the Kentucky Directors of Pupil Personnel Conference. Awards will be determined statewide based on each individual school's performance, regardless of district.
Murray Independent School District students are urged to honor High Attendance Day Wednesday, Sept. 20. The event is meant to encourage and stress the importance of school attendance. Attendance is directly correlated with the students’ opportunity to succeed, and this event is meant to foster positive attitudes about the importance of school.
Regular attendance is essential for success in school. By attending class regularly, a student is more likely to keep up with the daily lessons and assignments, and achieve academic performance benchmarks on time. Research reflects that a child’s attendance record is one of the strongest single predictors of their academic success. School attendance is a both a parent and student responsibility. Parents can help by instilling the habit of attending school every day at an early age and by staying interested in what their child is doing in school from day one all the way through graduation. Parents should stay involved by monitoring their child’s progress and grades, contacting teachers with questions or concerns, and attending school functions and meetings.
For older students, being in school every day gives them a chance to learn more about college and other post-secondary opportunities, and to perform to their highest potential on important exams they need to build a successful academic record.