Videogames, the opposite sex, hanging outàthose are some of the things considered normal teenage interests. Well, how about never missing a day of school, not one? That is far from typical and that is why only a small number of Chicago Public Schools stud
May 1, CPS honored five high school seniors and 40 eighth graders who have attended school every day that the school’s doors were open. Curie high school senior, Priscilla Barclay, and Benjamin Mays Academy eighth grade twins Montell and Dontell Wiliams were among that honorable group. Barclay has had perfect attendance since she started grade school at Beasley, continuing on into her days at Curie. In 12 years, she’s never missed a day.
The 18-year-old teen, who’s also a preacher’s kid, said she pushes herself to get up and go to school, even when she’d rather stay home, because she places high value on education. Her motivation comes from one of her favorite bible passages. “People perish because of a lack of knowledge,” Barclay said, paraphrasing a scripture.
Adding to the perfect attendance honor, Barclay said she has been on the honor roll all of her school days and even now maintains a 4.36 gpa. The modest teen, who is far from braggadocio, is also student council vice president and a member of five honor societies. She’s headed to Wheaton College in the fall on a full scholarship.
The Williams twins, 14, said they were inspired by several Mays teachers, making them never want to miss a day of school. “The teachers are really caring,” Dontell Williams said. The boys, whose eyes lit up at the mention of girls, admit that there were days they didn’t want to get up and go to school, but their parents “pushed education first.”
The boys said they would continue their no-absences tradition at Whitney Young High School, where they’re headed next school year. “Four more yearsà it’s not that much,” Montell said smiling.
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