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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Helping Your Child's School

Please spare a thought for all those mothers and house fathers who are slumped in their chairs (for all of three minutes0 wondering what on earth they are going to do with the rest of their lives.

Their last child has just entered formal school. Their day now stretches from around nine am to around three o’clock. What a potential force is about to be released! All that power and intellect! Every one of these men and women has so much to offer to society.

But the ripples go wider. What about the support family that are released from their obligations. These are the family and friends – the grandparents, the aunts and uncles. They know they will be called upon again in the holidays – but for the moment peace and quiet.

Many years ago the senior pupils in school acted as monitors. They would help the teacher with the administration and provide support to the children. Some of the monitors went on to become teachers – with or without external training.

Schools today still have monitors – who help with art table or act as prefects. I met a charming boy yesterday for the first time who had just been made a monitor. He took his responsibility sternly – and knew just what was expected of him. He was remarkably proud of his elevation to a position ore responsibility.

There is a clear path now for parents to act as classroom assistants – helping the teacher as best they can. Some parents go onto to become Learning Support Assistants. The LSA’s have tremendous responsibility within the classroom – and must save the sanity of many teachers.

So here is just a `little’ suggestion. If you have some time, and want to help your child, your child’s school and your child’s teacher why not become a volunteer? You would not be expected to work a full day from the start. You may enjoy the challenge. You will receive tremendous support from the school. You will become a member of a wonderful community. Teaching and helping children is enormously rewarding.

So don’t delay. Act today! You can only ask. After all if the school does not need you just at this moment you could always go back to being a doctor or a lawyer or whatever.

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