Rhode Island

Celebrities Boost Campaign to End Student Absenteeism

Rapper Ice-T is among the celebrities involved in the effort

Hollywood stars, musicians, professional athletes and public officials are getting behind an effort to fight chronic absenteeism in Providence, Rhode Island public schools.

The social media campaign, PVD 180, launched Wednesday is geared at motivating students to go to school, emphasizing the risk of missing classes.

The school department estimates that 45 percent of Providence students are chronically absent, which means they miss at least 10% of the school year.

Rapper Ice-T in a short video tells the students, "Listen to me, OK. School is important,'' and tells them he was on the honor roll in high school.

Superintendent Frances Gallo says the student-led campaign is a "unique and fun way to encourage kids to go to school.''

Videos and outreach will be deployed throughout the school year.

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