By LCHS Assistant Principal, Mary Hazlett
From the LCHS Attendance and Discipline desk we can report positive trends. Since the start of the year, the school’s attendance rate has increased overall every month. We credit this improvement to increased education and communication on on attendance requirements and policies with families via our PTSA meetings, student assemblies, auto-dialer phone calls and excessive absence notifications mailed home. Many families have shared that they’re choosing to schedule college visits on weekends or vacation days as well as making a concerted effort to call the attendance hotline to verify the reasons for absences. In addition, a school-wide effort to implement consequences at school for unexcused absences has appeared to discourage students from skipping class. Consequences such as the revocation of off-campus lunch passes and the assigning of after-school and Saturday detentions have been implemented. For those who have shown absences far in excess of the thresholds, meetings with families, school counselors, administrators and teachers have increased to assess needs and determine how best to achieve the student’s success in school.
In the world of discipline, we have also seen positive trends in the numbers evidenced by decreases in suspensions, fights, stolen property and drug possession. An increased effort to provide progressive discipline as well as resources and supports to improve student behavior have been expanded and utilized. The canine searches for contraband substances have been conducted on a monthly basis throughout the campus as well as prior to field trips, and these have reinforced the expectation that LCHS is a drug free school environment. Another resource that has been well received is the partnership with Action Family Parent and Teen Support Group, which offers free counseling for teen anger, defiance/rebellion, truancy, drug & alcohol abuse and negative peer group involvement www.actionfamily.org. Parents have especially appreciated this resource and the network of counselors who help improve the relationships with their teens and offer strategies to create more positive behaviors. These resources and practices will be evaluated at the Disciplinary Committee meeting held at the beginning of March. Suggestions for changes to LCHS disciplinary policies and procedures will be weighed by this committee comprised of teachers, students, parents, staff and administration.