Communities are rallying around their schools in impressive ways to ensure that schools have what they need to get the job done. Each year, state testing (MCT2, SATP, etc.) provides them the perfect opportunity to show their support for their schools and schoolchildren.
Here are just a few of the ways that schools, parents and communities have worked together in recent years to make state testing a positive experience for their children:
- parents participated in evening workshops hosted by schools to learn how they could help their children excel
- community volunteers worked as tutors throughout the year to help students develop the skills needed for math and language arts proficiency
- teachers encouraged students to write one another supportive notes offering good wishes and positive thoughts about the MCT2 in the days leading up to the assessments
- parents took turns providing healthy breakfasts or snacks of juice and cheese or peanut butter and crackers just prior to testing to ensure that students got a good start to the day
- community members donated peppermints and citrus-scented candles to keep students alert during testing
- parents kicked in to purchase school “team” t-shirts for students to wear on test days
- schools held pep rallies to get kids fired up for state testing
- local businesses, churches and civic groups made their employees and members available to proctor the tests
- communities agreed not to host youth recreational sporting events during test week so that kids could get to bed early
- businesses posted good luck messages on marquis and in store windows
That is a picture of a successful community — a community that embraces learning, expects excellence, and steps up to show its support for its schools and schoolchildren in creative ways.
Having our elected officials make education a top priority will be central to improving our education system. But that, alone, will not be enough. If Mississippi is to realize her true potential, we must all make education our priority. Our schools, our homes, our communities, our businesses, our churches and our leisure time should all reflect that our main focus is on ensuring the success of our young people. make education our priority. Our schools, our homes, our communities, our businesses, our churches and our leisure time should all reflect that our main focus is on ensuring the success of our young people.