Grand Prairie ISD Speeds Up Attendance Intervention

Case Studies
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District Overview

District: Grand Prairie Independent School District
Size: ~26,000 students.
Products Used: SchoolStatus Attend
Location: Texas

Grand Prairie Independent School District is a school district of 39 schools in and near Dallas County, Texas, serving a student population of over 26,000 students. 

The district places close focus on student attendance. Dr. Tameka Lewis, GPISD’s Student Attendance and Dropout Prevention Coordinator, leads a team dedicated to addressing student attendance within the district, including data collection and analysis, direct interventions, representing the district in court, and providing training and resources to school leaders.

0 %
District Save Rate
0 ,489
Family Communications

as of February 14, 2024

0 %
Conference Effectiveness

Outdated Tools Lead to Slow Response Times

Dr. Lewis’ small team manages attendance intervention for the entire district, from phone and mail interventions, to home visits, to truancy court filings and more. These responsibilities demand close attention to detail with little margin for error, which made them hard to scale across the entire district. 

Prior to choosing SchoolStatus, Dr. Lewis and her team relied on a variety of tools and programs in their work. But they were consistently frustrated with inefficient tools that took up valuable time. To improve their processes and conduct better attendance interventions, Dr. Lewis and the GPISD Board decided to try SchoolStatus Attend.

The process prior to SchoolStatus Attend was time consuming and cumbersome”
— Dr. Tameka Lewis

District Student Attendance & Dropout Prevention Coordinator, GPISD

The programs her team used to pull student information, deploy mailed letters, and prepare filings for truancy court required manual effort to pull data for each student. This made it much harder to give dedicated focus to specific cases and interventions. As Dr. Lewis put it, “because of the endless cycle of paperwork, there was a lot less people work going on.” The time-consuming process made it challenging to perform timely, effective interventions for students at risk of chronic absenteeism. 

Because her team was stretched thin, Dr. Lewis needed a way to streamline processes while maintaining data accuracy and security. With an easier way to access attendance data and put it into action, her team would be able to place more focus on helping students. After carefully evaluating several attendance solutions, GPISD partnered with SchoolStatus Attend as their attendance management and intervention platform.

GPISD selected SchoolStatus Attend over other solutions for several reasons. The platform lowers the difficulty of accessing and sharing data to inform attendance strategies and interventions. And it simplifies the intervention process by enabling automated interventions by SMS, email, phone, and physical mail. SchoolStatus Attend also made it much easier to share data reports for truancy court, which had previously been a big draw on the team’s time. 

Faster, Smarter Attendance Interventions

One of the major motivations for streamlining attendance data and intervention processes was to shift effort away from process and towards individual students. Implementing SchoolStatus Attend across the entire district allowed Dr. Lewis’ team to empower each school with data visibility and resources to battle chronic absenteeism at a personal level. It can be hard to introduce new technology to a district, but administrators across GPISD reported that SchoolStatus Attend was easy to learn and to use, and the platform was quickly adopted. As Dr. Lewis said, “[SchoolStatus Attend] gave us all of these wonderful and very necessary components in one platform.”

With more precise data on their hands, school leaders could get a better understanding of each students’ challenges—and develop more targeted intervention plans to support each student. With SchoolStatus Attend, school leaders and counselors in the district could see details that weren’t available previously, like the time of day when a student was absent, or past intervention records from truant officers or school officials. These details gave counselors much more opportunity to engage with families as part of the community, and address issues early before they evolved into chronic challenges.

SchoolStatus Attend will give you facts to communicate to people. And people move when there are measurable ways, quantifiable ways to find improvement or to at least fill in gaps.”
— Dr. Tameka Lewis

District Student Attendance & Dropout Prevention Coordinator, GPISD

Another major improvement SchoolStatus Attend brought to GPISD was speed. Cutting down on paperwork and consolidating processes into one platform allowed the team to send interventions more quickly than before. With faster access to student attendance trends and immediate follow-up to missed classes, school leaders and counselors in the district could build relationships with families and help correct behaviors in a positive way. For instance, interventions on the day of an absence allow parents to respond and give context, so an unexcused absence can be excused without harming a student’s record. 

By streamlining the most time-consuming elements of attendance intervention and using data to inform their strategy, GPISD schools were able to achieve significant time savings and use attendance conversations to build a stronger school community. 

SchoolStatus Attend Drives Attendance Wins

Dr. Lewis and GPISD have seen significant improvements in efficiency and student attendance rates. They’ve also seen an improvement in conference effectiveness, the change in attendance rate for a specific student, measured 30 days before and after a scheduled conference. GPISD achieved a conference effectiveness rate of 23%, indicating that attendance intervention conferences are effective at curbing absenteeism.

There are a lot more meaningful conversations about attendance because of this platform.”
— Dr. Tameka Lewis

District Student Attendance & Dropout Prevention Coordinator, GPISD

They’ve also seen direct year-over-year improvement in attendance rates during November and December holidays, which is one of the toughest times of year for student attendance. Dr. Lewis used SchoolStatus Attend data visualization to see that Mondays and Fridays were particularly challenging days for attendance. She used that information to coordinate a proactive plan with principals in the district, scheduling fun school events on Mondays and Fridays and incentivising attendance with a student recognition program. The results: a significantly stronger attendance rate in November 2023 compared with previous years. 

Going forward, the district intends to continue using SchoolStatus Attend as their platform of choice for managing attendance data and intervention. Equipped with data and a lighter administrative workload, the district can put their efforts towards informed, targeted intervention, and help students learn and thrive.

See What SchoolStatus Can Do For Your District

Want to learn how SchoolStatus Attend can impact your district’s attendance rates? Contact our team for a personalized demo.

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