Friday, April 26, 2013

TIRED, BUSY AND OVERWHELMED - Help! By Mrs. Dorothy Barron

          TIRED, BUSY AND OVERWHELMED; Help! By Mrs. Dorothy Barron

I am a tired, busy and overwhelmed Parent – How can I or we:

Ø  Best involve my or ourselves as a Parent(s) in our child/ren’s Education and make it count?

First, may I commend you for realizing the need and wanting to become an involved Parent(s) in your child/ren’s Education.

·         What is available in terms of your involvement; what are your child school’s needs?

·         What are your strengths and what can you offer in the way of involvement?

·         Do not leave your child’s total education up to Educators. As Parents offer and make suggestions from a Parent’s perspective.

Ø  Stay abreast of that which occurs with your child in Education and his/her school?

·         Organization is the key!

·         Make lists, schedules and go to Parent-Teacher Conferences. School conferences have been designed for Parents to interact with Teachers and Educators.

·         Visit the school at least occasionally; you should check out your child’s environment.

·         There is such a thing as Formal and informal education; know and understand the difference.

Ø  Make a difference in my child’s Education?

·         Determine where you want to make a difference; whether in your child’s informal or formal education, which needs your focus? Insure that your child receives both.

·         Decide how involved you want to be; there are various levels which Parents Taking Charge in Education has discussed previously and which consist of 4 levels.

Ø  Make Parenting easier in order to accomplish the above?

·         What can you live without and/or change with ease? Make a list of those things that are necessary; those important to you and the household and then those which you and/or the family want; then “Prioritize!”

·         List things that you feel are necessary both from you perspective and your child’s; Parents such can be different.

·         Set some limits; give your child/ren some responsibilities and hold them accountable.

·         You set the example, because they will be watching and more than often mimicking you or rather your actions.

De-stress; take some deep breaths; get your favorite soothing beverage and pen and paper – move away from the computer if situated in front of it. You will be tempted to put this down on the computer which may be quicker, but distracting and can lead to your feeling overwhelmed again.  After you have placed your responses to the above in writing on a pad computerize your notes if such is more comfortable and of ease for you.

Finally, relax and enjoy being a Parent. Parenting is not an easy job, but often some make it more difficult than necessary.  The key can be summed up in three words; “keep it simple.” Start in the manner you wish to continue; it also helps to put self in your child’s place and consider the question; if the child, how would I have liked my Parents to have dealt with this situation? Include the important things in life which do not consist solely of the amount of that which you can give your child/ren from a financial or materialistic standpoint.  When all is said and done, will your child/ren remember you and the things you taught them or mostly the material stuff you gave them?

Mrs. Dorothy Barron, Founder

Parents Taking Charge in Education


Friday, April 19, 2013

Life is too short – Enjoy it! By Mrs. Dorothy Barron

                       Life is too short – Enjoy it! By Mrs. Dorothy Barron

Summer is just around the corner and for many students such entails approximately 2 or so months out of school, but not necessary away from learning experiences. For those schools and students who have gone to a year round school system, may I suggest Parents monitor the process to ensure that such is beneficial and effective for your child as opposed to detrimental?

For students who are out of school, Parents consider allowing your child/ren to engage in activities that are relaxing and not as stringent or regimented; those that interest the child and even some new activities (with Parental consent); life is too short - enjoy it! It is possible to have fun while learning; we can learn from that which we hear, see and experience and it does not have to come from a formal academic learning environment. During the summer break from school consider the following four (4) reasons for allowing your child to engage in less stringent; new activities and/or those which interest your child:

Ø  The mind often functions best after a period of change and rest

Ø  Young children are not adults; care should be taken of one’s expectations of a child and the child level(s) of capability.

Ø  The lack of being a child when a child can pose problems later in life; such can lead to immaturity and the adult trying to recapture his/her childhood. Once childhood is missed one cannot relive one’s childhood. Some missed occasions may be experienced, but not one’s entire childhood.

Ø  Engaging in activities one enjoys can relieve stress to the body.

Parents do not allow the varied and various requirements in Education to place you in panic mode and you become overly concerned about your child’s formal academic schooling and/or cause you to overlook other important needs of your child/ren. Monitor your child’s activities; be there for your child and insure that your child’s life is well-balanced in all aspects. Your child may even surprise you with that which he/she knows; can accomplish and/or learn on his/her own. As a child, I enjoyed reading and spent my entire Summers reading books; the difference – out of school during Summer, I chose books I wanted to read and those enjoyed as opposed to regular school session; during which, most books were provided and required reading.

Parents; there is a time and place for all things- a time for a child to buckle down and engage in formal academic and regimented learning and a time for the child to be carefree; enjoying life as a child; exploring and engaging in activities which the child enjoys (with your consent). Life is too short – enjoy it!

Mrs. Dorothy Barron, Founder

Parents Taking Charge in Education



Friday, April 12, 2013

A Missed Opportunity in Education by Mrs. Dorothy Barron

  A Missed Opportunity in Education by Mrs. Dorothy Barron

Recently, there was talk of a large city closing a number of schools from what appeared to have been as a result of low enrollment and financial limitations. Without having heard directly from each side or each side’s position, I will not try and elaborate on this particular situation. As one who experienced a similar situation with another large city and school closings, I want to focus on two issues concerning school closings. The first issue looks at school closings’ direct effect upon those for whom Educators and Education Systems are in business to serve, which are children/students; the second issues consist of a missed opportunity in Education.

Generally, when neighborhood or community schools close students are often bussed or must travel and go to school(s) outside their communities. Children/Students in general and especially those of elementary school level due to age and level of maturity should not have to deal with being bussed outside their neighborhood unless the Parent(s) has made a choice to do so. I know there are pros and cons; understandable, but in this particular context on today, the focus is on the students’ well-being and safety. By no means is it being advocated here that students be forced to remain in schools that are inferior both physically and academically; such will be alluded to in the second issue mentioned.

Regarding the first issue, let us briefly consider some of the disadvantages and effects upon students as a result of neighborhood or community school closings and students bussed outside their neighborhoods:

·         Additional burden(s) upon students – many within society would be surprised at the number of students who must fend for themselves. Parents cannot be in two places at once. Often Parents must leave early for work and many children- young children are responsible for getting up, ready and getting themselves to and from school. Some young children/students have responsibilities equal to those of some adults.

·         Busing students outside their communities often places students in potential situations of danger; such can consist of being out on the street before dawn in order to travel a greater distance; sometimes there is a need to transfer via city bus, also students can become vulnerable prey for predators.

·         Crossing and encountering gangs and their territories - there is not a need to elaborate here, because most adults would not subject themselves to such.  We will note that such can lead to students becoming affiliated with and joining gangs simply as a means of protection.

·         Can increase the potential for student school drop-out rates due to some or all of the above. Perhaps, from the student’s perspective, it is better to be a “live, not formally educated student” versus a “dead, educated student.” From this point of view, such rather changes the perspective.

·         Many communities and/or social hubs have in the past been its churches and schools. When one or both ceases to exist such can and do often lead to a rootless community and for some young people lack of a solid established foundation(s) in which to identify/associate produces a loss of self-identity.

Briefly, and as it relates to the second issue of school closings being viewed as a missed opportunity; a new day has dawned in Education, but too often and far too many are still applying yesterday’s solutions to today’s challenges in Education. The tired, worn-out excuses of lack of; shortage of funds, funding and personnel are not the major problems in Education. In fact, many large city Education Systems are practically sittings on funds and funding; they simply have not tapped into these funding sources.  Consider using the lower enrollment as an opportunity to reduce class sizes and devote more time, personal attention and resources to students that lag behind in Education. From personal experience, students that have fallen behind generally do not benefit academically from being placed in a large classroom setting; they need individualized attention.

Most Parents want and strive for better conditions for them and their children in various, if not all aspects of their lives; instead of closing schools which in many cases eventually lead to the dissolution of communities and neighborhoods use this opportunity to transition some of these communities through revitalization and renovation.

I reiterate, “A New Day has Dawned in Education;” however, most are not prepared and many are not even aware that such has occurred. Applying the same solutions will not get our children or nation to the top or ready for challenges which we already and will continue to face on both national and global scales.

Mrs. Dorothy Barron, Founder

Parents Taking Charge in Education


Friday, April 5, 2013

BUSINESSES and Year Round Schooling for Students by Mrs. Dorothy Barron

BUSINESSES and Year Round Schooling for Students by Mrs. Dorothy Barron

Business Owners and Leaders; what were your thoughts if any on last week when Parents Taking Charge in Education’s blog Article and video, Year Round Schooling for Students – As a Parent should I be concerned  was posted? Did the blimp on your mental radar screen signal that you should have taken note or did you think or say, this doesn’t affect me? If you are a Business Owner or Leader and did not think last week’s article affected you; I beg to differ.

Perhaps, you are asking, what is the connection between Businesses and Year Round Schooling for Students? According to those who have/are implementing year round schooling, shorter breaks are to occur for one or two weeks at a time periodically throughout the year as opposed to the one traditional School Summer break of approximately 2 months. A number of Parents select their jobs; work availability, vacation time, etc. around their children’s school schedules, especially summer break which occurs at the same time and during the same period for most school systems across the nation.

How will year round schooling for students affect your business should your employees - some of whom are Parents incur problems with the care of their children during mini- school breaks? We are not stating that such will, but there is a possibility that such can and if so, how will such affect and effect your workforce and business; to what extent and what is your plan of action? Will you lose some of your work force and/or best employees? How will such affect your business if your company operates in various geographical regions?

                Students being in school year round can affect a number of businesses in one way or another; that which may be obvious is that supply and demand most likely will increase with year round schooling.  On the other hand businesses may have to deal with the aforementioned questions, which may necessitate reviewing, studying, obtaining feedback (uttermost from those directly affected) and formulating a plan of action. It might not be a wise idea to wait until problems begin and begin to adversely affect both your employees and business. From where I sit, I continue to see a shift in the traditional workforce inside companies in which a number of Parents (not totally limited to Parents) are leaving in an effort to begin spending more time with children, family and/or other pursuits. Will or is this shift beginning to adversely affect your business; if so, have you considered the implementation of at least two very important actions that may be necessary and in which you and your business should be engaged?

Business Owners and Leaders stay abreast of that which occurs in Education; it affects you and your business. You can impact it and those within!

Mrs. Dorothy Barron, Founder

Parents Taking Charge in Education