Hundreds of students miss more than 10 days of school, principal conducts home visits

Hundreds of students miss more than 10 days of school, principal conducts home visits
Morningside Middle School Principal Michael White rallied volunteers to visit students' homes to get them back in class. (Source: Charleston County School District)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - New data shows hundreds of Lowcountry students have missed more than 10 days of class during just the first nine weeks of the 2020-2021 school year.

The Charleston County School District reported 2,500 students who recorded more than ten absences within the first quarter.

The Berkeley County School District reported 1,727 students had failed to show up for more than 10 days of school during the first nine weeks, and Dorchester County School District Two reported 1,419 students had missed the same amount of class time.

However, one principal in Charleston County is working to change those numbers by going to his students and their families directly.

Morningside Middle School Principal Michael White says he discovered dozens of students were missing important class time, and he wanted to engage them face to face.

Over the course of a weekend, White and about a dozen volunteers knocked on the doors of nearly 90 students.

While they didn’t reach everyone, the initiative did allow them to interact with families and provide students with mobile devices, MiFis, and encouragement, according to CCSD officials said.

“This stressed brain is causing a lot of individuals to not really be focused on learning at the moment, so our job is to go reengage that brain in the process because there’s still learning to be done,” White said.

He hopes he can continue this initiative each nine weeks.

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