The sixth-annual bicycle presentation will be at 9 a.m. Saturday June 22 at the Pipkin Building on Tiger Lane near Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.
Students being rewarded for perfect attendance and no tardiness are from 29 of the 30 Shelby County Schools that participate in the DA’s Every DAy in School Program, formerly known as the Truancy Reduction Mentoring Program.
“While the number of participating schools has gone up, this year’s number of perfect-attendance students is remarkable and encouraging,” said Gen. Weirich. “It speaks well not only of the students, but also of the parents, grandparents, siblings and guardians who helped make sure they got to school each day.”
Students must bring their perfect attendance certificates from their schools and the congratulatory letters sent to them by Gen. Weirich.
Sponsors and donors for this year’s program include All About Bikes, Chic-fil-A, FedEx, George and Bena Cates, Gibson Donuts, Hotel to Home, The Hyde Family Foundation, International Paper, Krispy Kreme Donuts, Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park, Memphis Hightailers Bicycle Club, Memphis Fire Department, Monogram Foods, Nucor Steel Memphis, Inc., Shelby County Schools and Spectra Venue Management.
Members of the Memphis Police Department’s Community Outreach Program (C.O.P.) are helping with logistics and organization. Many of the officers also are volunteer mentors in the Every DAy in School Program, said bike program director Megan Pietrowski, who is director of Community Affairs for the DA’s Office.
She said more than a fourth of juvenile crime in Memphis occurs during school hours away from campuses, which typically involves truant or expelled students. The Every DAy in School program was created to identify at-risk students with excessive unexcused absences and to provide assistance to students, parents and faculty to reduce truancy rates.
Truancy rates have declined at participating schools since the program was started in 2006 with three schools. The program matches truant students with trained mentors from the community who work with them and emphasize the importance of daily school attendance. The mentors work at least one year with the students and make weekly contact with them. A mentor advocate from the DA’s Office also is involved.
Anyone interested in becoming a mentor can call 901-222-1395 or apply on the DA’s website at https://www.scdag.com/preventingcrime/mentoring.
Participating schools now include A. Maceo Middle, Alton Elementary, Chickasaw Middle, Douglass K-8, Dunbar Elementary, Ford Road Elementary, Gardenview Elementary, Geeter K-8, Georgian Hills Middle, Grandview Middle, Hamilton Middle, Hawkins Mill Middle, Hickory Ridge Elementary, Hickory Ridge Middle, Holmes Road Elementary, Humes Middle, Keystone Elementary, Levi Elementary, Lucie E. Campbell, Lucy Elementary, Magnolia Elementary, Raleigh Bartlett Meadows, Ridgeway Middle, Ross Elementary, Sherwood Middle, Springdale Elementary, Treadwell Middle, Westside Middle, Winridge Elementary and Woodtstock Middle.