Mr. Tarek Alamarie is the Assistant Principal, Data and Accountability, at John Adams High School, a New York City Department of Education school. A graduate of John Adams, Mr. Alamarie returned to his alma mater to join the faculty, after earning his college diploma from Queens College. He assumed the position of Assistant Principal, and is a leader in the school’s efforts to increase student graduation rates by focusing on attendance and implementing and testing new initiatives and processes to elevate attendance.
Mr. Alamarie credits the decision to put the focus on attendance as the main reason that John Adams High School’s graduation, credit accumulation, and Regents exams passing rates have risen. As an example, Mr. Alamarie noted that across 12 courses that John Adams offers to students who are repeating U.S. history, the Regents passing percentage increased from 30.28 to 63.97 during the January 2017 testing period.
Mr. Alamarie used the data collected within KiNVO to demonstrate the tool’s effectiveness at improving attendance. At a regular attendance meeting with teachers, administrators, and guidance counselors, he and Mr. Thomas Glass, Attendance Coordinator, shared attendance data from their first month using KiNVO. Mr. Alamarie revealed that John Adams High School had experienced an almost immediate 10% increase in end-of-school-day attendance. This instant impact garnered teacher buy in.
The NYC DOE requires that schools report official attendance, based upon students’ attendance to just one or more class periods. This means that, a student could show up for just one period per day, and be recorded present on the official record, even if he or she had missed all other class periods.
Mr. Alamarie explained that students would often be present according to the school’s daily attendance record, to one class period, but would still be absent from one or many other classes periods throughout the day. As a result, students missed instruction in several courses that were vital to their graduation.
John Adams High School began to track period-level attendance with KiNVO to address period-by-period absenteeism. Parents are now notified about period-level absenteeism in real-time, translated SMS, email, or robocall, as a last resort. With the ability to track period-level attendance, inform parents, and conduct immediate interventions, John Adams High School students experienced an increase in attendance, and in turn graduation and state exam passing rates.