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Front Page » September 6, 2005 » Opinion » Rantings and Ravings
Published 3,279 days ago

Rantings and Ravings


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By TERRY WILLIS
Guest contributor

There is a different feel to the air. Fall is almost here again. I love fall, it is my favorite season.

It also means that kids are returning to school.

This is the time when many parents breathe a sigh of relief at having survived another summer. No more worrying about what they will do all day. Many think that this is a good time to sit back since the kids are off in school and focus on their own lives for a bit. Actually this is the time when your children need you the most.

I am not just talking about helping them do their home work and making sure they are wearing clean clothes to school every day, I mean really being involved. Have you met with the teacher yet? Is there time that you can volunteer in the classroom? Can you drive the car pool so that you can really know who your kids hang out with? Are you willing to volunteer to be a scout leader? Can you coach a sports team or help with extra curricular activities?

I know how busy we all are, but the time when you can make a difference to your child is short. You do not get that time back. I miss the time I was able to spend with my kids doing things together. I have to say though, as they got older, I was less involved. I see that as some of the problems that my girls and I had as they went through their teenage years. I would do it differently, but I can't change what I did now.

I have heard many teachers say that parents are just not involved enough, especially when the child is struggling in school. Are you doing enough to make the parents feel welcome in your classroom? When a child is struggling, many times the parent is equally frustrated. It does not help to be lectured about the problem.

I had great teachers and not so great teachers that I met with when my daughter struggled with ADD. It was a junior high teacher that made me feel so unwelcome I did not return for any parent teacher conferences for a long time.

When my daughter was in high school I had a science teacher call me to tell me how wonderful my child was doing in her class. It made all the difference in the world. Some parents may not have done well when they were in school and are intimidated by the authority of the teacher.

Getting involved is crucial to our kids. We need to make the time to do it. And those needing the help need to make sure they welcome us all when we do. Let's reach out to each other to put our kids first.


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