Todd Schafer, the principal at Scenic Hills Elementary in Shelby County, Tennessee, announced that any parent who can get their kid to school every day will be eligible to win $100. It is not entirely clear how the winning parent will be chosen but, of course, this is about incentivizing attendance records to encourage parents and aid students.
“I believe it’s a good incentive, but they should want to send their kids to school regardless,” said an anonymous mom.
Currently, parents in Tennessee can face up to a $50 fine or 10 days in jail for truancy. According to local Tennessee news station WREG, at least 50 parents were forced to go to court last year because their kids were skipping class too often. And since the threat of punishment doesn’t seem to be working, Schafer is hopeful that the possibility of a reward will motivate parents.
Of course, not every parent was excited to hear about this new program and some parents voiced their concern with the idea of paying parents to take their kids to school. Others criticized the idea of only rewarding parents whose kids have perfect attendance, as it could incentivize parents to send their kid to school even when they have a legitimate reason for missing. And with this brutal flu season that has shut down schools in Oklahoma and Texas, many feel that they shouldn’t feel shamed for keeping their kids home from school when it could be dangerous to other students.