• Written by

    Alex Fees

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    St. Louis (KSDK)--Officials from St. Louis Public Schools visited congregations at about 25 city churches Sunday morning.  They rallied students, parents, and grandparents to make sure students make it to the first day of classes, Monday.

    District officials said Superintendent Dr. Kelvin Adams spoke at Christ Southern Mission Baptist Church at 9:30 and again at Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist at 11:15.

    "The dollars spent in this country around education is second only to dollars spent for Christmas," said Adams, driving home the significance of education.

    "I would just like to take time this morning to encourage everybody to make sure their children are in school."

    Adams told church members that  41,000 students go to St. Louis Public Schools.

    "It's extremely important we understand the importance of having students in school on the very first day of school," he said.  "Please make sure if you know or are connected to a young person, or there are young persons in your neighborhood, please encourage them to get to school."

    Classes for kindergarten through 12th grade begin Monday.  Pre-school for SLPS begins August 20.

    "If they're not in school, I don't have a problem giving my number," said Adams.  "It's 541-1165.  If you know of kids in your neighborhood who are not in school who should be, please call."

    Adams said school experience shapes people's lives.

    "People of St. Louis always say, 'Well what school did you go to?  Where did you go to high school?'  Those schools are important because they connect people together.  And provide them with support they need, not only for a year or two but sometimes for the rest of their lives."

    Adams said not all SLPS students get the support they need at home.

    "Some 1743 graduated last school year," he said.  "I can guarantee 50% of them did not have the kind of family structure that would have supported them.  But there were other persons in the community who made sure that they got through."