By Tim Kowols
Washington Island School District is experimenting with different ways to keep children in the classroom. Errands like doctors appointments that take only an hour or two for students on the mainland are full day endeavors for families on Washington Island. By encouraging parents to bundle their appointments on a single day and strategically placing half and full days off, superintendent Mati Palm-Leis says they have taken great strides this school year addressing the issue.
Palm-Leis says over the last six years, Washington Island School District has cut their absentee rate in half. He also credits some mainland doctors who have been accommodating to the unique schedule island residents face.