Murray Independent School District will be supporting Kentucky’s statewide “High Attendance Day,” Tuesday, Sept. 17 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 temporarily be stopped on Main Street between the bank and the school for the duration of the walk.
Michael Conley, MMS physical education teacher, said partnering walk to school with high attendance day is a great way to stress the importance of physical activity as well as attendance. “I encourage all families to take part in our walk to school and attendance, it’s a great partnership for academic performance.”
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 top Kentucky middle school in the large middle school divisionfor highest attendance for High Attendance Day receiving a 98.54 percentage. Teresa Butler, MMS attendance clerk, said she takes attendanve very seriously and describes herself as "old school" when it come to attending school. "I explain to students that school is their job right now, just like their parents have to go to work, they are required to attend school. "I also let students know that just because they don't feel well doesn't always mean they need to miss school. Butler said the MISD is blessed to have so many community people and parents that are willing to assist with this day. "The teachers are all on board for this day and we host a huge pep rally to celebrate our students."
During the pep rally students who have been in attendance all day will be eligible to win numerous items donated from a drawing. "We have surprise entertainment for them, and an extra special surprise at the end. The students have a great time and it wonderful to watch their smiling faces," Butler said.
Murray Elementary School will join the festive spirit and each class that is represented with all day full attendance will celebrate with two recesses. “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 prepare for school. Tony Jarvis, 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,” he said. Schools throughout Kentucky will compete for the highest average student attendance Thursday. 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 Tuesday, September 17. 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.