My name is Habib Bangura, and I am the Community School Director at Wadleigh Secondary School for the Performing and Visual Arts. I am from Northern Virginia, where I pursued my degree in education, and later started to get involved with the Cesar Chavez Public Charter School for Public Policy and the Phoenix Charter Academy Charter Schools in the DC area. Upon learning about Teacher’s College Raising Educational Achievement Coalition of Harlem (REACH), I traveled here to Manhattan because I knew the teaching-focused work taking place here was something of which I wanted to be a part.
I am extremely proud of the progress my attendance team at Wadleigh has already made in recent years. Last school year, we surpassed our graduation rate benchmark goal of 64%, achieving 67% for the senior class of 2016. With the help of data we’ve collected on students to track their progress, we were better able to “red-flag” students and provide more targeted instruction to support them in school.
At Wadleigh, KiNVO helps us improve attendance the most with “Tier 2 students,” meaning our students who attend between 75-90% of the school days. The extra communication that KiNVO enables with parents is usually enough to make great improvements in these students’ attendance and academic achievement.
I can remember one specific instance in which the attendance office was able to use KiNVO’s real-time data to figure out why a student was frequently absent from her classes. Although she would be marked present for the day in the general attendance record, she was skipping out for several periods at a time. When we decided to intervene, KiNVO was able to reveal to us that she had been consistently skipping class with another young lady during the day. Issues like these would have gone completely unnoticed without the help of KiNVO’s organized and real-time feedback on each child’s presence in class.
Another student I worked with had 97% daily attendance, but she frequently skipped class and was in danger of being ineligible for graduation as a result. Throughout our time working with her, KiNVO caused significant improvements in her class attendance. The added support and ease of communication that KiNVO provided to bring attention to her challenges is helping our team work actively to find accommodations for her that will best fit her academic and socioemotional needs.