PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — More students across Rhode Island are heading back to the classroom on Tuesday.
R.I. Education Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green said she hopes to continue to see growth in student success rates.
Last year the state saw an increase in math proficiency in students across the state and hopes to continue on that trajectory this year, according to Infante-Green.
Gov. Dan McKee has said he wants the state to be competitive with Massachusetts in its metrics.
“I feel like we’re a state that’s on the move, we’re moving in that direction. The governor has given us this challenge that we intend to meet, which is reaching Massachusetts outcomes or exceeding them and we’re trying to go for exceeding them,” Infante-Green said.
“We have those metrics statewide and we will continue to meet with the superintendents, make sure that everything is where it should be and that we’re all trying to reach those metrics,” she continued.
The first step to boosting student success, according to Infante-Green, is the student showing up to class in the first place. She says attendance issues have been increasing nationwide and can be detrimental to a student’s level of achievement.
“Attendance is really important. Nationwide, chronic absenteeism has gone up,” she said. “We have seen it here in Rhode Island and we have a very keen focus this year on attendance.”
“So parents, if you’re listening, two days out of the month that your child misses, puts them in jeopardy of being chronically absent for Rhode Island’s 18 days,” she continued.
Infante-Green said there are some absences that can’t be predicted, but just one day missed can put a student behind.