By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Classes begin tomorrow in Philadelphia schools. And the district is hoping that students, and parents, know the importance of showing up.

It should be a collective effort by parents and teachers to make sure children arrive at school on time and ready to learn, says Superintendent William Hite.

“One of the things that we cannot do is teach children to read, do math, think critically, or to problem-solve if they’re not in school,” Hite said.

At the start of last school year, Hite said 42% of students were in school 95% of the time, and that figure was up from 39% the previous year.

He says the district is making a special focus to this year to encourage attendance.