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Kansas City school district to reward attendance with money

September 16, 2018

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas City-area school district plans to use money as an incentive to get students to attend class every day.

Students at Hickman Mills School District’s four secondary schools will have the chance to win $100 each month if they have perfect attendance, The Kansas City Star reported .

“We have been working on this for five years,” said Carl Skinner, deputy superintendent for student services. “Students can’t learn if they are not in school. It’s a nationwide problem.”

Ruskin High, the Freshman Center, Smith-Hale Middle School and the Crittenton Center students with perfect attendance each week will be entered into a monthly drawing. Each school will then draw a winner’s name at the end of the month.

The district’s elementary school students will be eligible to win $50 each month and a new bike at the end of the year.

The funds for the incentives come from the district’s educational foundation and school fundraisers.

“The students are really excited about it and the parents love it,” Skinner said. “It helps them to realize that attendance is important, and there is a bonus.”

The district previously used a punitive program to try and boost attendance, he said. Parents and students were cited after a child missed school for seven days without explanation.

Parents are still called when a student misses three to five days. School counselors will also meet with students and parents to find a solution to the attendance issue.

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