All kids are worthy. That’s what the teachers of Truesdell Education Campus in Washington, D.C. decided in the summer of 2015. Unwilling to deny one student a home visit, they set their sights on a goal of 100%. On November 5, 2015, Truesdell Education Campus met its mark: 100% of its student body received a home visit.
Truesdell, a Flamboyan partner school, is the first public school in Washington, D.C. to reach 100%. Ever. With a student population of 590 from grades pre-kindergarten three through eight, this milestone demonstrates the collective power of a committed team of teachers, a school leader with a vision for improving the relationships between school and families to accelerate student learning, and families receptive to a meaningful relationship with the school and its teachers.
The result of building relationships with families has translated into student attendance. This year, Truesdell’s daily student attendance is 96%; it’s never been above 95% in previous years. The principal attributes this increase to the improved relationships with families. This is more cause for celebration!
Below is the Truesdell story when they were one student away from their goal, told by Michael Redmond, a Family Engagement Leadership Team Member at the school, along with reactions to this momentous occasion. Please join us in celebrating Truesdell Education Campus and the other D.C. public and public charter school educators across the city who do this important work.
All Are Worthy at Truesdell Education Campus
Horse shoes and hand grenades. Those are the only two times when “almost” is good enough.
When this all started way back during the planning phases of launching the school year during the summer, I remember meeting with the amazing Family Engagement Leadership Team about what goals we had for home visits. People threw out numbers such as 60% or 70% to show improvement from the previous year. After a few moments, I remember interjecting by asking the simple question “Which one of our students are we going to decide is not worth getting a home visit? Pick the kid now who you are saying is NOT going to receive a home visit.”
After a brief moment the team responded, “They all are worthy.”
Four months later, we are at the point where we are putting our money where our mouths are. We could celebrate now for reaching 99.83% but I can’t and won’t. I will acknowledge the hard work and dedication of each of you all to get us to 589 out of 590 students visited. Thank you all so much. We are not done yet.
We are down to the final student, an amazing Kindergarten scholar in Mrs. Elston’s class.
He is our 590. HE IS WORTHY. WE ARE HIS VILLAGE!
“This has been a true labor of love by our teachers, led by the amazing Mr. Redmond! Teachers now know they can overcome any obstacle—no phone numbers, language barriers, busy parents, and limited time. This has been a transformational experience for Truesdell.”
–Mary Ann Stinson, Principal of Truesdell Education Campus.
“This is the most incredible testimony to what this work means for our students, families, and teachers!” “We need to ask the question just as you posed it, who among our students are not worthy? They ALL are! Thank you, thank you, thank you for driving this home!”
–Josephine Bias Robinson, Chief, DCPS Office of Family & Public Engagement