Parents Step Ahead Receives Community Recognition by Richardson ISD
On Monday, April 2, 2012 Richardson Independent School District (RISD) Board of Trustees recognized Parents Step Ahead for their support in increasing parental involvement at an event involving Lake Highlands High School and Lake Highlands Freshman Center. Parents Step Ahead received the Board’s Community Recognition presented by Celina Cárdenas, Richardson ISD Community Relations Coordinator, who spoke about the Parents Step Ahead mission and success. The principals of both schools also spoke about the impact Parents Step Ahead has had in their school community.
“We’re thankful for Parents Step Ahead’s work for what we feel turned out to be an exciting night. We were very fortunate to be able to have parents there who weren’t able to come one time or another. They were engaged in the proceedings of the night and had the opportunity to walk around the resource fair,” said William N. Gallo, Principal of Lake Highlands Freshman Center.” It was a great opportunity for parents to listen and learn not only from the teachers but also from the students.”
The event from Parents Step Ahead took place Tuesday, January 24, at Lake Highlands High School with exhibitors and speakers introducing parents to resources available through the school district and community. Teacher “Ambassadors” at each campus made hundreds of personal calls to families encouraging them to attend the parent program. The event began with presentations about the importance of parental involvement and using local resources to guide students onto their path toward graduation. Parents and families were then invited to visit a resource fair featuring exhibitors from HACER (McDonald’s scholarship program), Primercia, UT Dallas, Community Council of Greater Dallas, STARS Program (UT Southwestern), ETA Cuisenaire, El Hispano News and Texas Tuition Promise Fund (Texas Comptroller). The evening ended with a family winning a new computer given by Parents Step Ahead.
“It was a huge success! The event brought Lake Highlands Freshman Center and Lake Highlands High School together. We had faculty working together that had never really worked together before. We had more than 50 faculty members make over 700 personal phone calls to families,” said Peggy Dillon, Principal of Lake Highlands High School. “We had so many parents that came out who had never been in our building before, and that was so exciting to see. Now we’ve made a connection and it’s a connection we will continue to have with them. It wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Parents Step Ahead.”
Increasing parent involvement in their children’s education is a key factor in improving students’ academic success. This lead to a partnership between RISD and Parents Step Ahead to focus on working with families in the Lake Highlands High School community to increase parental involvement, particularly those who are economically disadvantaged. “We are honored to have been recognized by Richardson ISD and see their commitment to families and improving the quality of education for every student,” said Lupita Colmenero, Founder and Chair of Parents Step Ahead. “Parental involvement is a crucial part of education and we hope to continue recognizing, educating, enabling, and empowering parents in Richardson ISD and across the nation.”