A successful school starts with a successful partnership between home and school. There are three important factors that contribute to the partnership. These three factors have helped Empire Elementary’s staff, parents, and students create an effective partnership.
Knowledge: With the face of education changing at a rapid pace, parents often feel “left behind.” Every year starting in pre-kindergarten, there are workshops and trainings offered at Empire which help parents gain the vital information they need to help their child succeed. Our pre-kindergarten staff offers monthly workshops that model important reading skills and encourage parents to read daily with their child. Each fall a Parent University is offered which provides parents a full day of breakout sessions featuring topics such as reading, navigating the new Common Core standards, math, drug awareness, health and wellness, and homework help. With the 1:1 laptop project starting this year, we are now offering a computer literacy course for our parents. Parents are welcome to attend any or all of the workshops and trainings and are encouraged to help put the strategies into practice.
Involvement: Throughout the year, Empire offers monthly activities that are fun for the entire family. We host a variety of academic and school community events. One of our exciting events is Reading Week. Members of the business community, media, parents, and honored guests visit the school and discuss the importance of reading and how education impacted their lives.
Our students have the opportunity to participate in activities such as Science Fair and Robotics. Each year our science fair continues to grow and we are proud to announce we have students who are Northwest Nevada Regional Science Fair winners. In Robotics Club, parents volunteer their time and meet 2-3 times a week to teach the students computer programming.
This year we have the honor of being selected to be the pilot school for an intramural soccer league which is sponsored by Mr. Ian Hill and his CPAC Company. Students are asked to set weekly academic and/or behavioral goals. When they achieve these goals, they participate in matches held at lunch. Mr. Hill and his company donated goals, balls and T-shirts for this innovative, new, intramural program.
Commitment: The journey to an effective partnership is made possible with the help of many different individuals. Our PTA is a strong board of parents who work to provide opportunities for our students. Parent liaisons bridge the gap between home and school and gathers information about the needs of our school community to create workshops and trainings. Our foster grandparents faithfully show up each day to work with students and impart their wisdom. Our parents take time from their busy lives to support their children and the staff.
It truly takes a village to raise a child and at Empire we have a strong village. Our village is filled with people dedicated to helping our students reach their full potential academically, socially and emotionally.
Evelyn Allred is principal of Empire Elementary School.