Raising The Grade: Parent Involvment

Thursday, September 9th 2004, 9:17 am
By: News On 6

The most important person in your child's education isn't in front of the class or at the head of the school.

Experts say those with the most influence are parents and guardians and getting involved in your child's school can really help them Raise The Grade. News on 6 anchor Scott Thompson explains.

Audrea Noyes is at school so much you could mistake her for a teacher at Centennial Middle School in Broken Arrow. She's on a first-name basis with administrators, knows her way around and is pretty handy with a copy machine. But Noyes isn't on the payroll; she's just a parent trying to lend a hand. "I would really like the teachers to concentrate on teaching kids and not necessarily making copies and get here and be tired or last minute trying to get things done."

Helping out also brings her closer to her favorite student. 12-year-old Darrian has gotten used to seeing her mom around school. And according to her mom she actually likes it. "Some people think, oh my gosh my daughter would die or my son would fall over but my kids their friends come up and are like 'Mrs. Noyes, Mrs. Noyes' its a good feeling." Getting involved cannot only make you feel good, but experts say it can also make your child a better student.

The National Parent Teacher Association says the research proves parent involvement leads to better grades, better behavior and better attendance.

"You are very, very important to them as a parent and there's no one who can take your place. There are others who can step in and help that child achieve but not as much as that parent.” Lois Breedlove heads the Oklahoma Parent Teacher Association. She is a former teacher and mother of four.

Breedlove says she saw the power of PTA when her boys were growing up. She knew when her son Joseph got in trouble, without him ever saying a word. "The four boys were walking down the hall and Joseph says I don't know how she finds out this stuff and the oldest Joshua says don't you know PTA moms know everything."

Audra Noyes says just being there can help kids stay on the straight and narrow. "I think it helps with their attitude. I think it helps with their self-confidence. I think it helps with their education, because they know they have to do their work, because you're going to find out about it if they don't." And for this volunteer that makes this time well spent.

The National Parent Teacher Association recognized 12 Oklahoma schools for excellent parent involvement. The News on 6 checked with the state and almost all of those schools are performing above the state average.