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Graduation Matters Missoula is a lasting, community-wide campaign to encourage students to stay in school through graduation.
Consistent with Missoula County Public School's goal of student achievement and graduation for all students, regardless of circumstances or abilities, the goal of Graduation Matters Missoula is 100% graduation. "100% graduation" includes keeping kids in school and, for those who have discontinued their education, promoting academic reentry with high school completion. When appropriate, for students who have dropped out, completion of the General Educational Development test (GED) through the Lifelong Learning Center is another important tool to be promoted.
Graduation Matters Missoula is being developed by volunteer teams comprising school district personnel, including administrators, teachers and principals; parents, students, the business community, nonprofit partners, the University of Montana, The Rotary Club of Missoula, and the faith community. It reflects the belief that not only is there a role for everyone in the community to play in helping kids stay and succeed in school; it is essential.
While many in Missoula have worked with MCPS over the years on strategies to keep students in school and address the reasons students drop out, this is the first broad-based effort to rally every sector of the community to encourage students to stay in school, and help them succeed.
The campaign is comprised of four focused teams; Schools, Parents, Students and Community. The teams are made of adults and students with specific interest or experience with the demographic to ensure the focus and outreach are suitably targeted and to improve our success rate.
Graduation Matters Missoula will include petitions to students, parents, school personnel, community leaders, and business to support this effort.
The evolving Graduation Matters website includes strategies and tips – based on proven strategies and best practices – for parents, students, school personnel, business and community members to follow as they encourage students to stay in school.
Graduation Matters Missoula is a long-term, sustained campaign, not a "one-shot" effort. Along the way, consistent with its goals, and reflecting the participation of a growing list of partners, campaign strategies may evolve and change. But Graduation Matters Missoula is here to stay.