Be There: Encouraging students to graduate - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Be There: Encouraging students to graduate

(WTVM) -

High school graduation is a day that teens and their parents dream about, but according to the National Center for Education Statistics, about 25 percent of students throughout the country won't graduate in four years.

"Planting that seed into that student's mind before they graduate… no excuses," said Michael Barden, principal of Shaw High School. "We are going to do the right thing. We are going to handle ourselves in the right way in the hallways and classrooms. We are going to work hard, study hard, and be successful." 

Barden said this is the second year they've had the event "Raider to Graduate." It's when freshman students sign a pledge to graduate on time. 

"It's our way to get the freshmen class to come in and they can start getting that mind-set that they are going to graduate in 2016," Barden said. "That is their ultimate goal." 

For freshmen Kennedie Osbon  and Chance Harris it's an encouragement to see that their teachers care this much about their future. 

"They are always trying to make you do your best, always telling you [that] you are really good at something, just really supportive of what you do and of your decision," Osbon said.

Harris said strong support from his parents makes him want to work hard for his future. 

"My parents are pretty strict, and they want the best for me and my little brother for us to graduate from high school and get into a good college," Harris said. "And, have a successful career when we get older."

Barden said one thing all students, not just freshmen, need to remember that making it to graduation depends on having a good attitude. 

"Got to be positive," said Barden. "Got to believe in yourself, and you have to want it. That's just what we expect from our students."   

Students say having parents that are involved also helps motivate them to work hard in school. 

They say coming to sporting events or just asking about homework can show your child that you care.

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