Unlike most politicians, I am not afraid to talk about the role that parents need to play in the success of children’s education. I will directly engage parents who are not actively a part of their child’s learning by providing opportunities for them to have their voices heard, empowering them to make decisions in their children’s education, and holding them accountable as well.
Parents must be empowered with information to help them make the best decisions and right choices. They should know how their child is performing academically, what their child should know, how much homework time is required and which schools are the most successful at teaching their children. By providing information to parents, they can and will make choices that are in the best interest of their child; that choice, based upon information, will help drive up quality for all of our public schools. There are some localized efforts in certain parts of the city to do just that, and I will advocate for such programs to be implemented district-wide.
Also, Out-of-School Time (OST) and summer learning opportunities are critical for kids to develop a well-rounded set of skills and competencies. Each day, I see how the most vulnerable children are affected by a lack of constructive opportunities. As the person who created the organization that would later become the Northside Achievement Zone, I understand what it means to provide growth opportunities outside of school for our young people. These opportunities are as critical for middle class families as for poor families, if we are to give our children every opportunity to succeed.