One would be foolish to think that our education system meets the requirements of every child that enters at the tender age of five or six and leaves after thirteen years. However, some parents actually think that our schools are totally responsible for the education of their children. Parents who believe this may be putting their children at a disadvantage.
Without question, the majority of what a young child learns will take place in school, but there is also much more that children will learn, and must learn, outside the classroom. It is my opinion that some of the most important lessons a child will learn are taught in the home. This means that parents have a responsibility to be active in their child’s education.
Two important questions follow from this statement. First, why should parents be an active participant in their child’s education and second, what can they do to help their children be successful in school? Two very important considerations, yet many parents fail to recognize the importance of being involved in their child’s education.
To answer the first question as to why parents should be involved in their child’s education, simply look at the numbers. One classroom teacher and twenty-five to thirty young minds to fill with knowledge can be a very difficult feat to accomplish. The ratio of teachers to students is just too high and although difficult to acknowledge, some students simply will fall between the cracks in the system. Parents are the safety net for their children yet too many of them fail to realize this important fact. The greatest resource any classroom teacher can utilize is the parents.
The second question deals with what parents can do to help their children develop in conjunction with the efforts of the education system. The one simple thing that parents should do to assist in the formal education of their child is to take an interest in all aspects of their child’s school activities: academics, extra-curricular activities and relationships. This means help them with their homework and know what they are doing in class. It means getting them involved in school sports teams, music, drama, clubs etc. Finally it means knowing how your child interacts with others, and if they need direction you are there for them.
Some of the most important lessons of life are taught in the home. Parents should not expect some of those lessons to be taught in our schools. They must take responsibility and take an active part in the education of their children. After twenty-five years of being part of the education system, one can see why some students are successful while others struggle. In many cases, the education received in the home is the difference.