|“We have to make time for our kids”|
|Written by Elena Miramar|
|Saturday, 28 March 2009 00:00|
Getting involved with the education of their kids should be something that all parents do without thinking or hesitation. Yet parent involvement in the schools and in their children’s education is at a very low level, especially in the Hispanic community. I have spent the last five years working with the education system, teachers, parents, students and non-profit groups to learn how the Hispanic community can improve results in education and careerachievement. It seems that a lot of people want to make the problem more complicated than it is, which requires a complicated solution that is impossible to apply.
Last week I met another group of parents at a school in Oakland. They had just graduated from a nine- week parent training program. Talking with these parents was encouraging that we can change the statistics showing low percentage of Hispanics graduating from high school. They now see how important their role is and they were not giving excuses for other parents’ lack of involvement. “We have to make time for our kids,” said Alberto Gomez. Unfortunately, these parents are still the exception as parent participation in the schools is still very low.
I believe that most parents want a good, positive future for their kids. But leaving the responsibility in the hands of the education system is not going to solve the problem or excuse themselves that there is no time or that they do not know how the system works. Immigrants especially have had to learn a lot about how things work in this country – we can certainly learn how to partner with schools for the sake of our community’s future. There are so many good people working to solve the education problem – if parents do their part we will see the Hispanic community achieve what it is capable of.
We have chosen to live in this country, we have chosen to have a family - it is time to take greater responsibility for the future of our families and the community.