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Chancellor’s Letter

Chancellor’s Letter

September 4, 2018

Dear DCPS Community,

DC Public Schools (DCPS) is committed to providing students with the support they need to succeed in college, career, and life. As we begin Attendance Awareness month, DCPS continues to partner with our families to identify and overcome the barriers that keep our young people from attending school.

Throughout our district, we are committed to ensuring that all students are attending school every day. In elementary school, students who are frequently absent are more likely to feel disconnected from school and risk academic failure. By 6th grade, missing 18 days or more a year is strongly linked to dropping out of high school.

Students who attend school every day receive rigorous instruction and support that ensures they feel loved, challenged, and prepared, and keeps them on the path to success. DCPS believes in the power of partnering with families and communities to make sure that students are in school learning the skills they need to thrive in life.

As a district, we have taken steps to support all students and families in attending school because every day counts. Every DCPS school has an attendance point of contact who connects parents with relevant attendance-related resources and school staff. DCPS also makes certain our parents and families have access to District services that provide the support and resources they need to succeed. Through Mayor Bowser’s Kids Ride Free (KRF) program, students ride for free on Metrobus, the DC Circulator, and Metrorail within the District to get to school and school-related activities. We continue to work with our partners throughout the city to make sure that every family has the tools they need to help young people attend school every day.

Next week, I will be hosting an attendance festival in Ward 8 to share attendance resources and celebrate the attendance progress the Ward 8 community has made. I will continue to partner with communities throughout the city to emphasize the importance of student attendance.

During School Year 2018-2019, I encourage you to take time to show the students in your community that you care about their future by communicating the importance of attending school every day. Whether you are a family member, a neighbor, a bus driver, or a business owner, everyone plays a role in supporting the success of our students.

I hope that you join us to celebrate the successful start of School Year 2018-2019 at our DCPS Back to School Block Party on Saturday, September 22 from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Anacostia High School. The block party will feature college and career resources, food, games, and more.

Everyone has a part to play in ensuring that every day counts for our students. Thank you for supporting our young people!


Amanda Alexander
Interim Chancellor
DC Public Schools