Kami Lake did a double take as she walked past the Suncoast Campaign for the Grade-Level Reading Booth at the Manatee County Fair.
She paused and asked, “Is this the same campaign that held the Every Day Counts poster contest?”
We informed her that she was correct, and we were displaying all school-nominated winners as well as the judge’s selection of the regional winners. She was delighted to find out that we had all of her school’s posters available to view on a display monitor.
Lake, the school social worker at Bayshore Elementary School in Manatee County, has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Attendance Awareness Poster Contest — so much so that she uses the phrase “Every Day Counts” to end her voicemail messages.
As a counselor, she was excited to hear about the Suncoast Campaign for Grade Level Reading’s focus on making sure students, families, and educators understand the importance of attending school every day.
She emphasizes attendance with all of her students because every day spent in class builds upon the next day. Students have higher rates of success when they attend school and participate in the lessons presented to them.
Bayshore Elementary School is especially proud because one of its students — Ramiro Garcia III — was named one of the 13 regional poster contest winners from Manatee County.
Many faculty members, including Lake, worked on a special announcement to share that Ramiro’s poster was chosen as the regional fourth grade winner for Manatee County. During his first-period class, Ramiro received his contest certificate along with balloons. The celebration concluded with Ramiro appearing on the Bayshore School news. All of his friends surrounded him to celebrate.
“Just imagine a scene from when Publishers Clearing House announces their winners then picture a child being that winner,” Lake said.
The scene Lake illustrated at Bayshore Elementary is an example of the excitement the Attendance Awareness Poster Contest created across our region. Each of the 38,000 students who created a poster were able to express through their art a commitment to outstanding attendance, reminding all of us that Every Day Counts!