LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A new campaign by Jefferson County Public Schools hopes to reduce student absences in the upcoming semesters.

The message that JCPS is hoping to spread is "Every day counts!" The first-ever district-wide attendance campaign was announced on Friday.

"Increasing student learning is one of my fundamental priorities as superintendent - and nothing has more of an impact on learning in the classroom than actually being present in the classroom," said Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio.

The district held a kick-off party for the initiative at Lincoln Elementary Performing Arts school (LPAS), which is one of 29 regular JCPS schools whose average student attendance this year is 96.5% or better.

Community and school leaders, UofL athletes, and radio personalities also attended the celebration to congratulate students for making attendance a priority.

Last year, 8.5% of JCPS students who missed more than six days of school did not graduate on time. This impact is even more noticeable in students who are already struggling in school.

The JCPS goal is actually more ambitious than the target set by the state through the Kentucky Department of Education.

"Data shows very clearly that when students improve their attendance, they improve their academy prospects, their chances for graduating and going to college and ultimately, succeeding in life," Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said.

Throughout the attendance campaign, JCPS will celebrate school successes with additional "pop-up parties". Other efforts include social media campaigns, individual school challenges, and outreach to parents to raise awareness of the importance of school attendance. The district will also provide opportunities for families to help each other and get their kids to school.

For more information, visit JCPSEveryDayCounts.com.