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Re: Attendance after school
Design a show that the kids want to be in. Then expect them to be at every marching band rehearsal. We rehearse everyday after school. If a student needs to go tutoring they must request from us and we have to approve it. We only let kids go who really need it. Since we have access to grades, we can easily see if the kid is failing because he is struggling to understand material, or failing because heís being lazy and not turning in work. We only allow students to go if they truly donít understand the material, and then we look into other options other than missing marching practices. Most teachers will work with students in the morning before school starts, or even allow them to come in during their lunch periods instead of eating in the cafeteria. Ultimately if we have reason to believe a student is not making a good faith effort to be at rehearsal then first thing that happens is student doesnít March that weekís game, if it continues heíll lose his spot and not be able to earn it back. Does this ruffle a few feathers every now and then, yes. Does it dramatically improve rehearsal attendance, yes. But weíve found that being super strict with has actually improved grades, since we donít allow students to kids for being lazy and not doing their work. The other key is you have to set the tone during summer band. You donít have to talk about it, you just have follow through with actions. If a kid misses a summer band practice without notifying us in advance, when he returns someone else is marching what used to be his spot. Itís really that simple.