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Dropout Prevention and Reduction Initiative
Secondary Student Success Toolkit
Part 5: Student Incentives - Additional Incentive ideas

Elementary & Secondary

  • Incentive Cards: The purpose of these cards is to encourage and reward students for excellent attendance, good behavior, and good grades.
    • A card can be earned by students at the end of each 6-week grading period.
    • Possible rewards can include discounts for any of the following: school events, school merchandise, lunches, and soft drinks.
    • The cardholders can be recognized at pep rallies, and during morning announcements.
  • VIP program: Intended to honor students who raise attendance, grades over a certain level in a three month period. Reward these students with special activities or rewards during Advisory or with gift certificates or prize drawings, pizza or other food related rewards such as a longer lunch period
  • Installation of a dedicated "attendance" telephone line: for parents to inform school of absences.
  • Run rewards scheme/raffles: Every month, the students who have perfect attendance that month, have their names placed in a drawing. Advertise this with posters, at school events, in the morning announcements
    • Three student names per grade are drawn for prizes such as gift certificates or discounts on school merchandise.
    • Winners of perfect attendance prizes, have their pictures taken and displayed in the main office. Other ways to recognize these students include putting their names in the school newsletter or on the school website.
    • At the end of the school year, the names of students with perfect attendance are placed in a drawing for larger prizes. Teachers with perfect attendance for the entire school year, can also be included in the prize drawing.
  • Kudos Certificates: Teachers and staff send positive certificates thanking students and parents for regular school attendance. They can also include attendance percentage goals to challenge students to raise their attendance average. (sample kudos certificate can be found at the end of this section)

Elementary - Bennie The bee

  • Students get Bee Buttons to wear when they have perfect attendance the previous week.
  • Hang positive banners in the cafeteria promoting attendance.
  • An attendance chart is displayed in the hallway or cafeteria on which all classrooms are listed. Each day every classroom that has perfect attendance has a sticker put on the chart. At the end of the month the class with the most stickers (for each grade level) will have a party such as a cookie decorating party, snowflake decorating and/or an ice cream party.
  • Each child who has perfect attendance all month with no tardies and who did not leave school early has his or her picture taken and displayed on the bulletin board.
  • At the end of the year, an assembly is held to honor the students who had perfect attendance or excellent attendance (not more than 3 absences, tardies, or early dismissals combined). Each student with excellent attendance receives a certificate and some sort of prize (such as a dinner or movie). Perfect attendance children receive a certificate and prize, but also have an opportunity to be in a drawing for a bicycle at the end of the school year.
  • Run SASI "Percentage of Attendance Report by Homeroom" to determine the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place homeroom winner by grade level. On Mondays, announce the top 3. The 1st place homeroom per grade receives a reward, such as "cookie coupons" good for a free cookie in the cafeteria. They also get to display a banner outside their classroom for the week. Give the classroom "airtime" for being recognized during morning announcements or in school newsletters.
  • Monthly rewards (cookies, candy, etc.) to the classes in each grade level that have had the most days of perfect attendance for that month.
  • Daily, the classes with perfect attendance and the school-wide percentage of students present are announced.
  • At the end of each nine weeks, put every student's name in a hat that has perfect attendance for that quarter and select one student to receive a reward (such as a bike and helmet) for having perfect attendance.
  • Recognize perfect attendance as a category to be recognized at each honor assembly by the student receiving a certificate and a pencil from the principal.
  • Give a trip to a skating rink or other activity for perfect attendance attained during the each half of the school year.
  • Have a Perfect Attendance Bicycle Drawing at the end of each grading period. gives away two new bicycles along with bike helmets and locks. Gather all students with perfect attendance for the grading period and draw names. Display the bicycles for each drawing in the school's main activity area to motivate the students.
  • Develop a partnership with a local business (Austin Parks and Pizza, Gatti town, Peter Pan mini-golf, Chuck E. Cheese) providing quarterly events or coupons/gift certificates for students with good or perfect attendance.
  • Remind students are reminded of the importance of good attendance on the morning announcements and during classroom visits. Also remind students of incentives and rewards for good attendance.
  • Develop an Attendance Team to implement a program that emphasizes the importance of daily attendance and rewards students who maintain perfect attendance.
  • Create an Attendance Club with monthly meetings to monitor students who accumulate excessive absences and provide early intervention services (i.e., telephone calls, home visits, and special incentive programs).
  • Students who maintain perfect attendance each month are given a bag of popcorn during their lunch periods.
  • Call out student names at lunch that have perfect attendance. Reward them with Gift Certificates.
  • Award "Traveling Trophies" on a monthly basis to the homeroom classes of each grade with the best monthly attendance. Take pictures of the classrooms and display them in the hallway. This creates "friendly" competition between the homeroom teachers and elicits their involvement.
  • Hold a Perfect Attendance Semester celebration with food and entertainment in the stadium (field day at the end of the day). Have a prize wheel for students with perfect attendance to spin for prizes during an assembly (names drawn to spin the wheel)
  • Each class has a banner in their classroom. Whenever a class has perfect attendance, the class gets a letter, which will eventually spell out "Perfect Attendance." The first class in the entire school to get the words "Perfect Attendance" spelled out on their banner gets a pizza party.
  • Randomly throughout the year reward all homerooms that get 100% for the week (esp. closer to TAKS).
  • Each class with perfect attendance for the week receives pencils for each of their students. At the end of each month, the class in each grade level with the highest percentage for attendance receives ice cream sandwiches.
  • Small flag pennants/banners that teachers hang outside door each day they have perfect attendance.
  • Allow teacher half-day off with certain parameters when their classroom has perfect attendance for _________________.
  • Give teachers gift cards for highest attendance monthly/every 9 weeks
  • Traveling "Bennie the Bee Trophy" for school with best attendance per month/every 9 weeks
Dropout Prevention and Reduction Initiative

1111 W 6th St.
Austin, TX 78703
512.414.0201