DPSCD Utilizes Count Day to Stress the Importance of Attendance, Nutrition and Getting Ready for School Every Day, with Educational Activities, a Special Lunch Menu, Voter Registration and MGM Grand Detroit Partnership

Parents and guardians invited to enjoy FREE breakfast and lunch with students as part of “Dine with DPSCD”; K-8 schools with 100% attendance will receive a FREE pizza party and high school students have a chance to win a $50 gift card; Non-Partisan voter registration available at every school!

DETROIT, October 3, 2016 – Students and parents across Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) will enjoy a day filled with educational and fun activities, delicious, nutritious food, and voter registration on Count Day, Wednesday, October 5, 2016. The action-packed day is part of an Attendance Awareness initiative to stress the importance of having students in school on time every day.  
 
DPSCD has joined forces with the Office of School Nutrition (OSN) and MGM Grand Detroit in this initiative, which also seeks to combat chronic absenteeism.
 
“First and foremost, we want to make sure that everyone understands that it is important for students to be in school every day, all day – not just on Count Day,” said Alycia Meriweather, Interim Superintendent for Detroit Public Schools Community District. “Every day matters and absences add up. Research shows that when students miss even two days per month, they are less likely to graduate. We want to make sure that all of our students graduate college and career ready, and being physically present for instruction is the first step toward that goal.”
 
Meriweather explains that the reason that attendance on Count Day is more notable than other days is because it is the day that the state of Michigan uses to determine how much funding each district will receive based on the number of students present on that one particular day.
 
“This is the first year in many years that DPSCD will receive our full per pupil funding from the state, ensuring that we have more resources for our classrooms and schools,” said Meriwether. “During this first Count Day where funding is no longer going to pay debt, the district needs to make sure that every single student who attends our schools is counted as present so that we receive every single dollar that should be coming to DPSCD.”
 
Meriweather thanks MGM Grand Detroit and the Office of School Nutrition for their dedication and support in helping underscore Attendance Awareness.
 
Parents invited to “Dine with DPSCD”
As part of the slate of events, all DPSCD parents and guardians are invited to enjoy free breakfast and a specially-prepared lunch with their students on Count Day. The specialized lunch menu includes: baked barbeque chicken leg, seasoned greens, maple-glazed sweet potatoes, cornbread muffin and blueberry tutti fruity.
 
MGM Focuses on Gompers
For the seventh year, MGM Grand Detroit is sponsoring a DPSCD school. This year, through MGM Grand Detroit’s Touching Communities, Touching Lives™ initiatives, volunteers will be focusing on Gompers Elementary-Middle School on Oct. 5 for a fun and educational day.
 
Highlights to include:

  • Educational trivia games with “Gompers Pride” items and gift cards as prizes
  • Arts and crafts
  • Reading sessions
  • A nutritious lunch prepared by MGM chefs
  • A raffle that will award parents of students in attendance with a stay at MGM Grand Detroit
 
Students will also receive Gompers-branded backpacks, and the partnership will extend beyond Count Day with MGM providing recognition materials to the staff to promote positive behavior and school pride amongst students all year long. Count Day also marks the launch of MGM Grand Detroit’s annual Fall Coat Harvest which has provided more than 36,000 coats to students throughout Southeast Michigan since its inception.
 
"Through Touching Communities, Touching Lives MGM Grand Detroit is committed to supporting education initiatives throughout our region. Count Day is an opportunity to provide resources that will ensure student attendance each and every day throughout the school year," said Dee Dee McKinney Odom, director of Public Affairs for MGM Grand Detroit.
 
“I Count” Stickers!
Every student in Detroit Public Schools Community District will be reminded that their attendance matters on the day before Count Day with “I Count” stickers and other messaging that support attendance. Staff members will be sharing a personal touch with all students as they leave on Tuesday that their attendance matters on Count Day and every day.
NEW! Gift Card Drawing for High School Students
Additionally, all high school students who go through the lunch line and attend every class on Count Day, will be entered to win a $50 gift. Also, all K-8 schools with 100 percent perfect attendance per class will receive a pizza party, sponsored by the Office of School Nutrition.
 
Non-Partisan Voter Registration
Finally, as a way to really emphasize the importance of attendance, not only at school, but also at the polls on Election Day, there will be voter registration available at all schools.  As a reminder, October 11 is the final day for voter registration for this fall’s election.
 
To learn more about Detroit Public Schools Community District’s Count Day activities and Attendance Awareness initiative, visit detroitk12.org/enroll or call 313-240-4377. 
 
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About the Detroit Public Schools Community District
The Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) is the new public school district for the Detroit community. It was created through the Michigan Legislature’s passage of the education reform bills in June 2016. DPSCD has replaced the former Detroit Public Schools. It will maintain all 97 schools, as well as all necessary support services including transportation, school nutrition, special education, early childhood learning and much more. In addition, DPSCD will emerge with new and innovative academic programs and support, along with facility improvements and enhanced security. Most significantly, DPSCD emerges with virtually no past debt obligations. Learn more at www.detroitk12.org.
 
About MGM Grand Detroit Touching Communities, Touching Lives™
MGM Grand Detroit works to strengthen communities in which we operate and our team members live through corporate social responsibility (CSR).  Our areas of focus include:  youth development, education, arts and culture, diversity, sustainability and community development. The MGM Grand Detroit team members’ charitable giving initiative, known as the MGM Resorts Foundation, has raised more than $3 million for Metro Detroit area community organizations. Team members also volunteer throughout the community by taking part in activities that help empower youth, complete beautification projects and feeding those in need. For more information about Touching Communities, Touching Lives, go to www.mgmgranddetroit.com/touchingcommunities. MGM Grand Detroit is a wholly owned subsidiary of MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM).  For more information, visit www.mgmgranddetroit.com or call toll free at (888) 646-3387.
 
About the Office of School Nutrition
The Office of School Nutrition (OSN) is a school food authority (SFA) that administers, manages and operates all federally reimbursed Child Nutrition Programs and ensures program compliance and meal accountability.  OSN has a staff of over 400 employees and manages facilities located in over 140 meal sites.


Chrystal Wilson          
(313) 212-3039
Chrystal.wilson@detroitk12.org        
 
Da’Stanza Murphy
(313) 421-9203
da’stanza.murphy@detroitk12.org

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