Impact Insights

Program attendance success is a cause for celebration

The Lana Learn team in Washington, DC celebrates efforts in program attendance success across HIT partner schools.

The High-Impact Tutoring (HIT) program in Washington, DC has been in full swing this fall. The season began with comprehensive staff training to bring our new hires up to speed. Afterwards, we continued with site visits conducted by our HIT Program Manager, Maya Burke, to check in on Academic Coaches and school staff. Most recently, it included a site visit and observation conducted by CityTutor DC, a strategic partner of the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) HIT team. We ended the year by reflecting on this busy season and acknowledging team efforts for program attendance success.

There have been many successes and challenges in the past couple of months. With the support of our funders, OSSE, and our partner schools—Theodore Roosevelt High School, H.D. Woodson High School, Thurgood Marshall Academy PCS, and IDEA PCS—we have been able to address and tackle them together. 

Program Attendance Rates

A matter of high concern across the District of Columbia (DC) right now is the attendance rate of students. At the high school level, the district-wide attendance rate currently stands at around 60%. This is unfortunate, but we are pleased to note that this is not reflected in most of our programming. HIT attendance rate remains stronger at the public charter schools that we operate in than at the DCPS schools. On average, HIT program attendance rates are 15% above district-wide high school attendance.

At IDEA Public Charter School, attendance rates are strongest at 91%, and Thurgood Marshall Academy Public Charter School runs a close second at 87%. At Roosevelt High School, we have seen an attendance rate of 68% so far this year, and at H.D. Woodson High School, we have observed an attendance rate of 55%. Both DCPS schools have struggled to reach the attendance rates that the charter schools have. However, we have been working closely with school administrators at both DCPS schools to brainstorm ways to combat the issue. 

Our HIT coaches have implemented strategies to encourage student attendance. These include recognizing important milestones, building strong student-tutor relationships, and providing snacks for program participants. We will continue to work closely with our partners to do everything that we can to boost student attendance. 

Acknowledging Team Efforts

Our small DC team wants to acknowledge all the hard work that each staff member has put into our programs and celebrate with an end-of-the-year party. We are proud of how far we have come this year. Our company has grown significantly in size and reach, and we are excited to continue this growth in the years to come. 

Our end-of-the-year celebration included a potluck in which our team members each contributed some of their favorite holiday dishes. We also attempted to have a gingerbread house-making competition in which we split up into three teams. The larger structures proved to be a struggle for most. We were reminded of how much time and patience goes into making a gingerbread house, not unlike the efforts that go into tutoring. The evening concluded with a white elephant gift exchange in which everyone was too nice to steal one another’s gifts. It was a fun way to celebrate our successful year and end it on a high note. 

Lana’s DC academic coaches celebrating the end of the year together.
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