HISD attends ‘SA Kids Attend to Win’ awareness event

HISD attends ‘SA Kids Attend to Win’ awareness event
Posted on 10/06/2017
HISD attends ‘SA Kids Attend to Win’ awareness event

Harlandale ISD was in attendance and highly represented at the “SA Kids Attend to Win” (SAKATW) awareness event on Sept. 26.

SAKATW is a collective impact initiative focused on improving attendance for chronically absent students, those missing 10 percent or more of school.

During the event, HISD obtained four of the six additional $500 Attendance Incentives geared at improving attendance. The recipients were Jennifer Montes from Adams Elementary School, Ronnica Toscano from Rayburn Elementary School, Katherine Pena from Gilbert Elementary School and Tara Steed Johnson from Wright Elementary School.

After District 2 City Councilman William "Cruz" Shaw and State Senator Jose Menendez announced proclamations, there were stories of inspiration shared by City Councilwoman Ana Sandoval, Roosevelt High School Principal Melvin Echard and HISD Social Worker Yadira Garcia (Leal Middle School and Stonewall Flanders Elementary School).

The event shined a light on the importance of school attendance.

In San Antonio, 15 percent of students were chronically absent in 2016-2017. The most common reasons for missing school were: doctor’s appointments, waking up late and health reasons (cold, dental, allergies and flu).

This past year, SAKATW had 58 campuses involved in the San Antonio area with 7,500 plus students receiving interventions while working with 50 or more partners to make daily school attendance a top priority in the community. 

In 2016-2017, 59 percent of chronically absent students improved in partnership with SAKATW. By the end of the year, 34 percent of chronically absent students were no longer chronically absent with the help of SAKATW.

Data gathered revealed that students in grades 12, 9 and Pre-K were most likely to be chronically absent while students in grades 3 and 4 were least likely to be chronically absent. It was also found that 43 percent of students with at least one out-of-school suspension event were chronically absent, and students who were not chronically absent passed the third grade reading STAAR at a higher rate than students who were chronically absent.

All campus staff plays a part in discovering the root cause (the reason for the absences) through daily dialogue and building relationships with students.  Students and teachers said that involving parents could help encourage greater attendance. Developing interventions appropriate for each situation is guided by the attendance committee which includes key staff members to include but not limited to administrators, counselors, social workers and teachers. 


All Campus Attendance Teams have a mission: to examine campus attendance, implement monitoring practices, intervene in positive ways and improve attendance within the school. 

Each member of the campus attendance team has an important role in working with students and understanding the individual barriers to student attendance.

L to R: Ellen Parker, Sylvia Servin, Ronnica  Toscano, Maggie Keller, Cynthia Perez, Scarlett Lopez, Henry Bernal, Sally Presas, Joe Bishop, Yadira Garcia, Shelly Odom, Lauren Gutierrez, Brian Jaklich, Sue Carey, Tara Steed Johnson, Katherine Pena, Deborah Hernandez, Becky Gonzalez, Graciela Gil, Michael Bustos, Jennifer Montes, Judy Pfeifer.

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