Monday, August 31, 2015

FYI: Park Circle Friends Nurturing Public Schools

As promised, here are the notes from the first meeting that was held last week. We'll be posting next steps soon! Thanks again for your involvement.
Representatives at the meeting included (apologies to anyone we left out): Principal Bob Grimm, NCHS; Principal Joseph Williams, Morningside Middle; Principal Eric Hansen, NCCAE; Principal Ross, Goodwin Elementary; Principal Timothy Schavel, Hursey Elementary; Principal Lynn Owings, Burns Elementary; Principal Mary Reynolds, North Chas Elementary; Dr. Davis (special assignment principal); and many teachers. School board members: Cindy Bohn Coats (Chair), Chris Staubes, Tom Ducker; Charles Monteith, Constituent Schools Bd Member; City Councilor Bob King;
Ideas for getting involved:
• Mentor a child (group FB page will post a list of resources)
• Tour the school
• Join the School Improvement Council (do not need to have a child attend to join)
• Join the PTA (do not need to have a child attend to join)
• Increase opportunities for discussion and connections between parents of different backgrounds so that we get to know one another
• Advocate at school board meetings
• Volunteer for lunch duty
• Attend sports and other school events
• Work for legislative change, i.e. school report data collection methods
• Build relationships with people in the broader community
• Most importantly, send your kids to zoned schools
Overall discussion:
• Important to get involved in feeder schools now before high school
• Get to know the schools beyond what is stated in their report cards, which can be misleading
• Learn about our schools' success, e.g. NCHS has 13 AP courses, 70% of students passed EOC tests; Morningside Middle won the Palmetto Gold Award and has an exciting single gender program
• Hard to pinpoint the exact moment that a downward shift occurred at NCHS, but the capacity is for 1500 and there are only 494 students
• Our tax dollars pay for our schools, and when we don't attend, we are all losing out on a valuable resource
Next steps:
Park Circle Neighbors Nurturing Schools will hold another meeting to assess interest among parents as to what type of activity/actions they want to take as well as develop a purpose statement and some short term and long term goals.

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