Dallas ISD students who attended school on the first day of the new school year Monday, August 27, had their names entered into a random drawing to receive one of three $500 incentives; $1,500 given by me through the Blackburn Foundation.
I announced the incentive to encourage students to show up for class on time and ready to learn on the first day of school. Attendance is critical to a student’s academic success. I wanted to make sure that each student and their parent or guardian realizes just how important attendance is, starting with the first day of the school year.
I also encouraged others to make matching donations to be used to offer incentives to more students. I am proud that Mark Koch and the North Dallas Chamber joined in with $1000 each.
Thanks to those matching donations of $2,000, a total of 15 students will receive incentives to be distributed; two middle and two high school winners each received a $500 debit card; one elementary student received a $500 debit card; and 10 elementary students received a $100 debit card. The winners were randomly selected electronically through the district’s MIS department.
Three Dallas ISD students were surprised with a $500 debit card for their attendance on the first day of school when I personally delivered the cards to them. Others received their debit card through their school principal.
The enrollment number for the first day of school was approximately 140,000. The second day enrollment numbers for Dallas ISD schools jumped more than 10,000, pushing the district’s enrollment to 150,736; the largest number of students attending Dallas ISD schools on the second day of school in the last ten years.
This incentive, along with other strategies implemented by schools and other organizations, helped get more students in school on the first and second day, allowing for increased opportunities to teach and learn. Welcome back students!