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Parents step up

In regard to the March 15 story titled "Dropout bill headed to governor," I'm very pleased to hear the state is looking for more ways to lower our dropout rates. I can't agree more with hitting the problem at an earlier age.

Too often we wait until a child has struggled through most of high school, so helping them as early as middle school will make a huge improvement.

My concern with the legislation is with giving parents the ultimate decision of whether or not their child participates in an intervention program.

As a whole, parents have become more involved in their children's education, but they still have a long way to go. We are facing a changing society, with parents who find other issues — their jobs, personal lives, etc. — more important than their children.

I believe we need to offer parents the chance to become involved, but ultimately there must be requirements.

If we were to evaluate the personal lives of most dropouts, the answers to our questions would be there. These children need to be followed, and their parents must be held accountable. That would be the first step in teaching the children responsibility.

I have personally witnessed several children struggling, but schools appear to fear parents. The schools know these children need assistance at home, but they choose to turn the other way.

This type of action would definitely require teacher, school district and social-services intervention at times, but shouldn't our primary goal be what is best for the child?

If parents aren't willing to help with a child's education, what other aspects are they unwilling to help with? It's time to bring parent's responsibilities back into society!

Alisha Jones
March 21, 2012

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