New Law Makes School Attendance a Top Priority

Houston County, AL - Walking through school doors every day is about to become a bigger deal.

Houston County Schools Director of Accountability David Sewell said, “Attendance will become important because this is one of the measurable objectives to determine if you are a failing school.”

It’s part of the Alabama Accountability Act. Elementary and middle schools will be graded on attendance.
They must average 95 percent to stay off the list of failing schools.

Sewell has been crunching the numbers for the past two years, and the schools have met that goal. However, he said there’s always concern.

“Sometimes we deal with parents who say look I can't make them get up and go to school. Or she just won't go,” said Sewell.

Ashford Elementary School leaders have already reached out sending letters to explain how important time in the classroom is.

“Without the parents we just can't do it. We are encouraging them to help us meet those goals. It takes all of us to educate the child. You certainly want to meet those expectations. At our school we have good attendance, but it can always be better,” said Ashford Elementary School Assistant Principal Denise Kohen.

Better attendance could translate to better grades for both your child and their school.

Instead of attendance, high schools will be graded on their graduation rate.

Houston County Schools start back August 19.

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