The pandemic has disrupted routines and challenged each of us to figure out new ways to move forward. At Patrick Henry this is especially true. Economic, housing, and medical challenges have made getting to school on a regular basis harder than ever. In fact, attendance at Patrick Henry has really struggled. A recent look showed that half of Patrick Henry students are chronically absent; meaning on average they miss more than one day of school every two weeks.
If this pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that it takes a village of supporters rallying around students, families, and schools to ensure their success. This winter HOME WORKS! has partnered with a local small business, GreenLeaf Market to to encourage strong attendance and support Patrick Henry students and families.
Starting last month, in collaboration with GreenLeaf Market, we launched a pilot to improve attendance in the 1st- or 2nd-grade classrooms. The parents who get their kid to school all day, everyday from 8 am - 2:15 pm are rewarded with a $10 gift card to GreenLeaf Market.
Since the program started we have seen more and more students with perfect attendance each week. The first week was 26%, week two was 29%, and this last week 35% of our 1st- and 2nd-grade students had perfect attendance! We are looking forward to continued improvement in 2021.
GreenLeaf Market is located just two blocks from Patrick Henry and is locally owned and operated. They are donating half of all gift cards towards improving attendance at Patrick Henry. This is just one of the ways they are actively engaged in the neighborhood community. GreenLeaf’s mission is to bring fresh and locally grown food to the residents of the food desert in North St. Louis, downtown St. Louis, and beyond. They have brought over 100 new jobs to the area and a major part of spurring new development and help revitalize the economy of the Near North Side.