Grand Island Public Schools looks to improve attendance for seniors

The district makes the move after they took notice of an attendance issue after reviewing data from the past couple of academic years.
Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 9:35 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - As Grand Island Public Schools enters a new school year, district officials are making a push to their senior high students to improve attendance. The district made the move after reviewing data from the past couple of academic years.

In the 2019-20 school year, Grand Island Senior High School’s average daily attendance rate, or what is referred to as an average daily membership, reached a solid 90%. A year later, the average daily membership dropped 5.8%. Continuing with the trends, the 2021-22 daily average dropped nearly another percentage — making for a total decrease of 6.7% in the span of two academic years.

Dr. Tawana Grover, GIPS superintendent, said the COVID-19 pandemic is to blame for the drastic decrease. She also said they’re not the only district in recovery mode either.

“The education landscape, no doubt, it has been impacted by the pandemic and many school districts across the country are trying to figure out, you know, what are their moves of recovery moving forward,” Grover said. “We definitely experience the impact of students being out due to illnesses.”

To solve the attendance problem, district officials have implemented a new electronic hall pass system to keep better track of students at the senior high.

GISH Principal Jeff Gilbertson said they had already seen a positive response from the changes.

“We’ve had immediate results, immediate impact with that tool,” he said. “Currently, we can limit the amount of passes on any given moment throughout the day, and we can limit who’s in the hallway when and what areas of the building that they’re allowed to travel to.”

Dr. Grover added, they plan to continue monitoring the daily attendance rates and will be updating the community on where they stand in the coming months.