If the intangible joys of long division aren’t enough to compel you to attend fourth grade, perhaps cold, hard cash will do the trick. Students at Bancroft Elementary in Mount Pleasant who maintain perfect attendance on Tuesdays and Thursdays from November through March will receive $100 debit cards that can be used at local merchants including Borders, Toys “R” Us, and other such civic-minded retailers. The largess comes courtesy of Newton Learning, a New York–based company that puts together supplemental programs for school districts across the country. Newton’s programs are funded through the No Child Left Behind Act—maybe that’s what George W. Bush really meant when he called the act an economic stimulus. While Principal Fay Thompson welcomes the promotion, she stresses that the school itself isn’t the entity giving the money away. “Do you know what [$100 per student] would do for after-school programs?” she asks. —Justin Peters

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