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Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Levinson Urges Local Businesses To Become School Counts! Employers

Atlantic County Executive Dennis Levinson urges area businesses to show their support for local students by joining the Atlantic County School Counts! program.

School Counts! encourages employers to use a school-issued certificate that documents student performance during high school. Student performance in high school is a reliable indicator of how a student might perform in the workplace. A School Counts! certificate offers an employer some assurance of a student's dependability.

"This program just may have greater importance to the employer than the student," Levinson said. "It not only gives students an incentive but also provides assurance that the employee is reliable since the student must have a 95% school attendance rate and maintain an average or better grade point. Considering that many seasonal employers lose employees around mid-August when some young people want to relax before returning to school, a School Counts! certificate may help to identify young people more committed to their summer work."

"It is essential that students learn early on that their performance in school will have a direct impact on their future opportunities," Levinson added. "This program helps them to make that connection. It also helps an employer by providing them with a valuable screening tool to help them recruit better workers. It's win - win and costs nothing to participate. I strongly encourage businesses to join this program."

Currently nine area high schools are participating in the program and more than sixty businesses.

The School Counts! program is a cooperative effort by Atlantic County, the Atlantic County Chamber of Commerce, the Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce, Atlantic Cape Community College, and the Workforce Investment Board.

To register as a School Counts! employer contact Kathy Simione, Atlantic Cape Community College School Counts! Coordinator, at 609-343-4820.

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