Verona school reaches out to parents

By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Verona Elementary School educators took their parent outreach efforts one step further on Friday afternoon.
After struggling to get parents to attend several events the school has hosted, VES Principal Temeka Shannon decided to take an event to the parents.
More than 10 Verona educators set up several tables and met with parents at the playground of Tupelo Trace apartments. Teachers from each grade level talked to parents about what their children were studying and gave them worksheets they could use during the summer to prepare for the upcoming school year.
The school also had games for children, had an inflatable donated by Recreation on Wheels and provided food.
“We thought we could try this, to come out to one of the neighborhoods and meet with parents,” Shannon said. “We wanted to come to the parents to make it convenient for them.”
Shannon said that the kindergarten to fourth-grade school has about 150 to 170 students who live in Tupelo Trace apartments.
“It is a way to build a relationship with the parents and maybe show them ways they can help at home,” said fourth-grade teacher Laura Porter.
Kindergarten teachers, for instance, handed out a checklist of skills that kindergarten and first-grade students should have and also provided worksheets on math and language arts skills.
“I want the parents and community members to know we are there for them and willing to reach out to them in the hopes that they will be even more involved,” said kindergarten teacher Alice Maynard.
Charlene Robinson’s 4-year-old daughter Jamyrah Brownlee will not enter kindergarten until 2013, but she picked up several worksheets to begin preparing her for when that day comes.
“They gave me some papers to use to work with her so when she goes in, she will know what the teachers are looking for and can have it down pat,” she said.
Lachanda Ferguson came with her second-grade daughter Sariya Edwards, 8.
“I think it is a really good thing,” she said. “It is keeping us informed.”
chris.kieffer@journalinc.com