Saturday, August 22, 2009

Parent Involvement

Research shows that students who are involved in school activities and organizations are more successful students. The Mesquite ISD has a wide variety of opportunities for students of all grade levels to be involved in activities ranging from fine arts and athletics to special interest clubs and community service groups.

Many of these activities include opportunities for you, the parent, to be involved, as well. From serving in the booster club to helping design costumes, showing an interest in your child (and your child’ s school) reaffirms the positive choices they make.

Parents may be reluctant to volunteer, wanting to give their child space. But children quickly appreciate the interest you show in them and their activities. I’m sure there are lots of parents out there who would love to share how this experience has helped their child succeed. So tell us. What success have you witnessed by becoming involved in your child’s education? What would you tell a parent who wants to be more involved?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Summer Activities

As we approach the end of the school year, remember that education doesn’t stop when the summer break begins. For example, Mesquite ISD Community Education and the City of Mesquite offer summer courses, workshops and activities that keep children learning while they are having fun. Perhaps the best summer activity to keep our brains sharp is reading for pleasure or reading to your very young children – even those who have not yet entered kindergarten. Please take a moment to respond to this blog entry by sharing ways that you encourage your own children to keep learning throughout the summer months.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Exploring Optional Flexible Year Program

Our district’s vision includes success for all students, and we are constantly looking for new and innovative ways to ensure that every student reaches his or her fullest potential. One such idea that has caught our attention is what is called the “Optional Flexible Year Program” – or OFYP. Under this state-allowed program, school districts may adopt a modified school calendar that would allow students who have passed the TAKS to attend up to 10 fewer school days during the regular school year. Students who do not pass the TAKS would attend school on the remaining 10 days and receive special individualized or small group instruction to help them pass those sections of the test that were causing them difficulty. Another option is that districts may use OFYP for credit recovery. In this scenario, students who are not passing a class would have the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the subject within those 10 days and possibly receive credit for the course, within certain guidelines. Right now, we are only examining this opportunity for our high school students. By offering these students extra help in a smaller class setting during the regular school year, our hope is that we can help them to pass their courses and the TAKS to graduate on time.

At this point, we are still looking into this option. What do you think? I would like to hear your thoughts, as parents, on how this program would be received by our community. Please share your ideas as to whether this type of approach would benefit our students.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Home and School Partnership

I was recently asked about my wish for Mesquite ISD students in 2009. I answered, “That all of our students will resolve to take advantage of the opportunities they have to learn each and every day.” Now that we are well into January and the second spring semester, I am confident that our students and our district will realize continued success this year. Great things are ahead! To quote our new President, “Yes, we can!”

However, as educators, our influence often stretches only part of the way on the path to achievement. Research shows that the home and school partnership plays a vital role in the success of each student. As we enter the second half of the school year, I am interested to hear your suggestions on how we can strengthen this partnership between us. As parents, how do you encourage your children to take advantage of the opportunities they have at school to learn and achieve? What can you share with other parents that will help them to support their own children? And what can our schools do to make our relationship more productive?