SOURCE: Students Helping Our World (S.H.O.W.)

Students Helping Our World (S.H.O.W.)

September 30, 2011 19:41 ET

Mayor Villaraigosa and George Lopez Launch Academic Incentive Program at Partnership for Los Angeles High Schools

S.H.O.W. Program Rewards Academic Performance and Attendance at Partnership for LA High Schools With Celebrity-Driven Incentives

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - Sep 30, 2011) - Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Funnyman George Lopez, along with the Partnership for LA Schools announced the Los Angeles launch of S.H.O.W. (Students Helping Our World), a student-formed incentive program to address the serious issues of academic performance and attendance. Speaking at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights before thousands of students, the Mayor and Lopez touted the program, which will be implemented across all high schools in the Partnership's network: Roosevelt High School, Santee Education Complex, Mendez Learning Center and Jordan High School.

S.H.O.W., which recently named 16-year-old Harvard-Westlake student Danny Belgrad as its president, boosts academic excellence and student attendance through an incentive program that features visits from athletes and artists to motivate students to "show up" to school and stay on track for graduation. The program culminates in a year-end concert featuring today's top artists as a reward for meeting attendance and academic goals throughout the year. Artists who have partnered with S.H.O.W. in the past include Kanye West, Common and Lupe Fiasco.

"S.H.O.W. is an innovative way of motivating our students and rewarding them for showing up to class ready to succeed," Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said. "This program is part of our larger efforts to create an engaging learning environment where all students have the opportunity to achieve."

Excessive absences and truancies have been linked to problems later in a student's life such as poor grades, dropping out, unemployment, drug and alcohol use, and even criminal activity. According to an Open Society Institute study, "Missing School: The Epidemic of School Absence," students who eventually drop out miss about one year of school between the 6th grade and the point of dropping out.

"It's apparent that excessive absences have an adverse effect on student achievement. Absenteeism affects not only the individual student's grades, but, if widespread, can also affect the classroom and school at large," said Marshall Tuck, CEO of Partnership for LA Schools. "We wanted to find a creative and proactive way to encourage students to come to class and do well in school -- we found that in S.H.O.W., which takes a unique approach to addressing academic performance and attendance."

The S.H.O.W. incentive program works as follows:

  • Students earn points for grades (C or better) and attendance (96 percent or better).
  • Points will be tallied at six monthly benchmarks throughout the competition.
  • In addition to the concert, five rewards/incentives will be awarded throughout the competition to celebrate students who meet the attendance and grade targets.
  • A student will need to collect a minimum of six points to earn a ticket to the end-of-year concert. Students can collect a maximum of eight points.

"The heart of S.H.O.W. is its mission of peer-to-peer mentoring," said Elizabeth Rogers, executive director of S.H.O.W. "Students partner both within their schools and with the S.H.O.W. network for moral and academic support. Students cheer each other on, encouraging attendance and achievement. By partnering with their peers, students will stay interested and engaged with the S.H.O.W. mission."

The S.H.O.W. competition will take place from November 1, 2011 to May 31, 2012. For more information about S.H.O.W., visit www.showstudents.org.

About S.H.O.W.:
Students Helping Our World (S.H.O.W.) was created to address academic performance, attendance and behavior problems in public high schools. After hearing a story on NPR about a Chicago student who was failing, but turned his grades around after his mother offered him Lil Wayne concert tickets, sophomore David Abrams launched S.H.O.W. in 2009. David and sophomore Zack Harris gathered their friends and founded S.H.O.W., eventually forming partnerships with CPS, the City of Chicago, and the Kanye West Foundation. S.H.O.W.'s mission is to motivate and incentivize students from lower performing schools to improve their grades, SHOW UP to school, improve behavior, and raise individual and overall graduation rates. With the original founders off to college, Harvard-Westlake student Danny Belgrad of Los Angeles has been brought on as President to manage the organization. For more info: www.showstudents.org.

About Partnership for Los Angeles Schools:
The Partnership for Los Angeles Schools was founded in 2007 as the cornerstone of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's strategy to improve education in Los Angeles. It is a unique collaboration between the City of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Unified School District to turn around LA's lowest performing schools and to create a model for doing so district wide. The largest non-district school operator in Los Angeles, the Partnership today manages 22 schools with nearly 19,000 students and 1,500 employees. The Partnership is a 501(c) 3 non-profit education management organization with nearly 37 full-time employees. For more info: www.PartnershipLA.org.