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North Queensland Toyota Cowboys and NRL legend Matty Bowen has visited Garbutt State School to congratulate and encourage students on their Try for 5! school attendance challenge.

>>> More info: Try for 5! school attendance challenge

Try for 5!, supported by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, is a program running in nine schools across the state, designed to challenge, motivate and reward individual classes and schools for their attendance during the challenge period.

"Try for 5! has been running at Garbutt State School since the beginning of term 2 and the staff, students and their families are right behind it,” Cowboys community ambassador Bowen said on his visit on Friday.

“The improvement in school attendance rates compared to the same time last year has been fantastic. There was one week where attendance was over 10 percentage points higher than last year.

“There are lots of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at Garbutt and I’m particularly proud of the efforts they and their families have made to improve school attendance.   

“There have been a number of weeks this term where the Indigenous kids have had a better attendance rate than the school as a whole”.

Bowen started his morning at the school with a BBQ breakfast with parents, teachers and students and then spent some time with each class outdoors, passing on congratulations and encouraging words on their efforts and a challenge to do even better in term 3 and Try for 5! each week of the term.

“Good school attendance is absolutely essential to getting a good education,” Bowen said.

Proving that you can’t take the footy out of the man, Bowen finished the morning at the school with a game between the year 5 and year 6 students and a special presentation to the class with the best attendance record in term 2.

Acknowledgement of Country

North Queensland Cowboys respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.