Mayor Bowser promotes Every Day Counts! as students return from break

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Muriel Bowser is the D.C. mayor. (Brian Kapur/The Current/February 2016)

As part of the Every Day Counts! campaign, Mayor Muriel Bowser celebrated Jefferson Middle School Academy’s success in creating a strong school community that welcomes students and families.

Last month, the middle school was announced as the winner of the 2018 DC Public Schools (DCPS) Standing Ovation Prize for Family Engagement. At the event, the mayor highlighted the school’s work in building positive and collaborative relationships with students and families through home visits and student-led conferences.

Jefferson started making home visits during the 2012-2013 school year and each year it has continued to expand its program. Now, home visits are a required part of Jefferson’s model and all members of the staff, including operations and student support team members, are required to do home visits.

During the 2016-2017 school year, Jefferson visited 186 families, and survey data shows that the family engagement efforts are changing how students perceive school. Last year, on the annual DCPS student satisfaction survey, 96 percent of students either “agreed” or “strongly agreed” with the statement, “my family is welcome at my school.” That is an increase of 5 percent over the previous year.