As Spring ISD begins its second month of the 2021-2022 school year, administrators, teachers, and community volunteers took to the streets early Saturday morning to directly reach out to those students who may have not yet returned to class this year or who are struggling with attendance.
Known as the Success Walk, the annual event kicked off at 9 a.m. sharp Saturday morning at the School for International Studies at Bammel. The outreach was part of the district’s EVERYday Counts, Attendance Matters campaign, which began Sept. 7 with volunteers staffing a phone bank to call families — with special priority given to finding seniors who may be at risk of not graduating on time — to encourage them to return to in-person learning.
“Attendance is important for students because the curriculum builds upon itself, especially in math subjects,” said Assistant Superintendent of Student Support Services Dr. Efrain Olivo. “If you don’t attend school every day, you fall behind and get frustrated when it becomes difficult to catch back up.”
In speaking to families on Saturday, district leaders also emphasized the importance of in-person learning, with safety protocols in place to ensure the health of students and staff.
“Our focus for the Success Walk is to get students back into school and give them some hope to help them understand that they can do this,” Olivo said. “Education is the key to accomplishing goals in life, and we want to ensure that Spring ISD students get to where they want to be. This year’s Success Walk is a little different because parents and students are a little more hesitant to speak to us due to the pandemic, but our goal remains the same as it always has been — to get our students back in school.”
Volunteers canvassed neighborhoods throughout Spring ISD, talking to students and their families about the importance of coming to school, as well as to address any obstacles they may be facing this school year.
“This is my first Success Walk as trustee, so I’m looking forward to having contact in the community,” said Spring ISD Trustee Kelly P. Hodges. “I’m hoping this event encourages our students to come back to school because we all know that it starts here.”
Spring ISD Trustee Justine Durant, who has not missed a Success Walk in the last eight years, says going around knocking on doors brings along feelings of excitement knowing the event makes a difference.
“We know that our students sometimes need an extra push,” Durant said. “They need to know somebody cares, and that’s what this event shows. I want to commend the district for putting this together, and I want to commend the volunteers for getting up early on their Saturday morning to go out and make a difference.”