Council encourages parent involvement

To this end, the board has generated a number of ideas, particularly regarding services and accommodation for students with special needs. But not all are directly related to the classroom or the children. A Finance 101 seminar offered nearly twice this spring focused solely on money matters.

“That was one of the things that came out of our needs assessment,” said Willie Washington, director of ESOL and federal programs for the school system. “Parents wanted more information about managing finances and becoming more financially stable and literate. We partnered with Truist to offer workshops on the basics of checking and saving, and saving in case Our goal is to repeat them in the fall, and then broaden the scope of topics to things like credit repair and buying a home.

Washington said the majority of programs for the fall will focus on effective communication with the school; homework help, especially with math and reading; and read bulletins and status reports.

“But we have also organized and donated hygiene kits to different schools so they have them when they see a student in need,” she said. “We also organized a coat drive over the winter which was very well received. And all these ideas came naturally from our parents.

With the start of a new school year just weeks away, the board is planning a back-to-school party in late July with free school supplies, physical exams and haircuts. As with all events, Washington said the goal is the same: to improve student achievement.

“And it’s not just academics; it is also social and emotional well-being,” she said. “We know that parents have a significant impact on student success. As we increase their effectiveness in advocating for their children, it helps improve overall success.

Information about municipal schools in Decatur is online at

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