Superintendent Prepares Families for First Day of School in Hartford

Hartford Schools Superintendent Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez is knocking on doors in Hartford to remind people the first day of school is on Aug. 27.

She's trying to reach as many families as possible.

"The goal today is to do very specific targeted outreach to some of our families,” Torres-Rodriguez said. “We’re making sure that we're getting the word out about the first day of school, and the fact that we want to see each and everyone of our students in school on the first day and every day after."

Getting kids to class is a big challenge in Hartford. For example, Torres- Rodriguez says at the kindergarten level, the chronic absenteeism rate is as high as 30%.

"We know that at the adult, the familial level, there are needs that have to be met,” Torres-Rodriguez said. “5-year-olds cannot get to school on their own. We know that we need to provide additional wraparound supports for the family."

"Not everyone knows when the first day of school is, so it's good to come together, to work together and send the word out there," said Tashana Mullings, Youth Development Specialist, Our Piece of the Pie.

“I'm finding that a lot of parents don't really know I think that they need to get involved their kids going back to school especially in Hartford you would think that they would be involved,” Tahira Harvey, a parent, said. “I think it's absolutely spectacular what they're doing."

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