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Students Rewarded for Improving Attendance | Education & Schools

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Students Rewarded for Improving Attendance
Students Rewarded for Improving Attendance

Students at Chaparral High School got a holiday treat like no other Friday. They were rewarded for achieving a goal only two other schools -- in the entire country -- were able to reach.

A year ago, Chaparral High School was struggling with a poor attendance rate and low test scores. In an effort to make changes, Clark County School District Superintendant Dwight Jones did a complete overhaul by hiring new staff and a new prinicipal.

Chaparral is now being nationally recognized for improving its school attendance. The school took part in the Get Schooled National Attendance Challenge.

"What they're doing is looking at kids that have improved attendance and academic performance in the course of a year. And of course, they compared last year's data with this year's data. And, what we noticed was there was a five percent increase in attendance," said Chaparral Assistant Principal Todd Petersen.

Chaparral competed against dozens of schools and won the Western Regional Competition for most improved attendance.

The award was announced at the school's assembly Friday morning. To celebrate the accomplishment, Paramount Pictures and the Get Schooled program treated every Chaparral student to a free premier of Mission Impossible at Town Square. The students were driven in 35 school buses to the theatre.

Students like senior Eric Portillo and freshman Kailey Aguilar say the school stepped up to the challenge.

"I didn't believe we could win," said Portillo

He says knowing that they had the option of becoming a better school helped motivate students to go to class everyday.