The Positive Effect of Parent Support Groups

If you have attended a Reading Memorial High School athletic contest, drama production, marching band performance, and/or a middle school or elementary open house or PTO meeting, you have seen the participation and dedication that we receive from our parent support groups.  You may be a participant in one or more of these groups.  These groups include, but are certainly not limited to, our Parent Teacher Organizations (PTO), Parent Supporting Student Theater (PSST), Band Parents Organization, Friends of Reading Football, and the Reading Athletic Boosters.  Each year, our parent support groups contribute thousands of dollars and countless hours of their time for school, athletic, and extra-curricular programs and events.  For example, our PTO groups have generously donated thousands of dollars to support new technology in our district.  Without these groups, we would not have the level of programs and services that we currently have in our school district.  They are certainly a key partner in the success of our schools.

Recently, I have been able to see first hand three of our parent support groups in action.  With each group, I was thoroughly impressed with the organization, the leadership, and the support that these groups provide for our students.  For example, in late October, the Band Parents Organization played a critical role in coordinating the New England Marching Band Competition that was held at Reading Memorial High School.  The competition ran smoothly and efficiently.  They also help support the band at other marching band competitions, parades, football games, and other endeavors.  Recently, I was able to see another parent support group, the Friends of Reading Football, working diligently behind the scenes of a home football game to make sure that everything was set up and organized so that the game ran smoothly, both on and off the field.  Their fundraising efforts have provided the additional resources necessary for the football team to maintain additional coaches, film support, and additional supplies that the school department budget cannot afford.

The final group that I was able to see in action was the Parents Supporting Student Theater.  For two weeks, this group worked with the school drama staff collaboratively to run a very organized and outstanding production of The Scarlet Pimpernel.   They organized ticket sales, ad book, flowers, and refreshments, ushered the public to their seats prior to the show, provided support behind the scenes during the show, planned the student gatherings before/after the show and helped break down the entire set on the last night of the show.

It is because of the dedication and effort of all of our parent groups that helps the Reading Public Schools provide great experiences for our students.  On behalf of all of our students and staff, thank you for your continued support.

Stepping Stones….

  • The third and final Community Forum will be held on Monday, November 29, beginning at 6:30 p.m., in the Superintendent’s Office.  There will be a presentation on the anti-bullying plan at 6:30 p.m., followed by a discussion of the FY12 budget process.  Your input is valued and critical to the success of both of these items.
  • Bullying Plan Comments Due by the End of this Week-The comment period for the Draft Anti-Bullying Plan will be ending this week.  To access the draft plan, click here.  If you would like to give any feedback on the plan, use the form located here.
  • Congratulations to the Reading Memorial High School girls swim team, under the direction of Coach Lois Margeson, who won the Massachusetts Division 2 State Championship last week.
  • Congratulations to the Reading Memorial High School Football Team, under the direction of Coach and RMHS teacher John Fiore, who finished the season a perfect 11-0 and captured the Middlesex League Championship.  They will play in the Division 2 State Semi-Finals this Tuesday against Dracut.  The game will be played at Reading Memorial High School.
  • Last Monday evening at the Reading School Committee, RMHS students Emily Crampe and Katchen Lachmayr accompanied by mentor Dr. Alex Ballantyne, presented on their journey to Iceland during the summer of 2010.  You can view their presentation here.  During this school year, both students will be doing an independent Senior Project to extend their learning on the geography and environment of Iceland.

Have a great week!

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