EDITORIALS

Find some time for school

Editorial board

THE ISSUE: Tomorrow is National Parent Involvement Day.

WHAT WE THINK: Parental involvement is more important than ever because as the state cuts education funding or holds it until the last possible second school administrators are forced to pressure teachers to do even more with less. 

Tomorrow is National Parent Involvement Day. It is all about parents being involved in their child’s school.

Here schools boast impressive parental involvement scores. However, parental involvement scores can be jacked up simply by a parent answering a teacher’s note. It does not require a parent step foot in their child’s classroom for a school to have impressive parental involvement scores.

Scores are meaningless, anyway. It is what happens educationally and emotionally inside and outside the classroom that really counts.

Children need positive role models. Teachers fit into that category. But, the more positive role models our children see the better.

Consider how many less than positive influences today’s children are exposed to. The answer is not to try to isolate children from every bad influence. That is impossible. The answer is to surround them with more positive influences.

A child needs more than just a teacher and parents as positive role models. The impact any adult can have as a role model with children other than their own is beyond the capacity to calculate.  

Parental, or adult, involvement is more important than ever because as the state cuts education funding or holds it until the last possible second school administrators are forced to pressure teachers to do even more with less.  

That means less one-on-one student interaction. That does not bode well for the student, the school or society.

“Volunteers and adult assistants in classrooms make a huge difference, especially with schools and teachers under so much stress,” Paddy Eger, author of Educating America 101: Strategies for Adult Assistants in K-8 Classrooms, said.

“With a little training and a handful of strategies, most adults can effectively assist both teachers and students. One hour a month or a week helping students is a small investment of time that has big returns.”

Eger is absolutely right when she points out assistants provide extra hands in preparing and providing enriching activities.

“While they can’t solve all of the problems associated with drastic budget cuts,” Eger said, “they can help ensure students feel as little of the sting as possible.”

If society wants responsible children, society needs to meet its responsibility to the children first.