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Operation PTA: 8 Reasons To Accept This Mission

September 13, 2011

Mission Background

As parents we scream how we want the best education possible for our children.  Yet when we get the opportunity, we allow our children to violate the dress code (heck, we show up at the school in headwraps, PJ’s and slippers; so why should the school be surprised by our child’s attire!)  We send them to school lacking basic manners; and with no concept of respect or fear of authority. We refused to make our presence known at our child’s school until he or she gets in trouble.  Then we go to the school to turn it out on behalf of our unruly (and dead wrong) child.  We fail to foster a relationship with our child’s teacher; we fail to support/enforce identified disciplinary concerns; and we fail to support our children by assisting them with and checking their homework daily (then you want to go up there, act surprised and raise sand about your child failing???)  How can we request the best yet we are unwilling to do the work to support the high standards; when our child gets the opportunity to attend a good school?  

So you say….what is she talking about? (wait for it…)Your mission, if you should choose to accept it: Join the PTA!

The Mission: #1 Operation PTA

LIFE IS A GAME.  In order to rise to the top; you MUST play the game. We as black people try so hard to NOT play, try to change the rules of the game to accommodate our laziness or ineptness , or try to create our own game…newsflash…it’s not your game to change or reinvent—LEARN TO PLAY THIS GAME!  Here are 8 benefits of accepting this mission

1. Say My Name, Say My Name: The school faculty and staff will know who (insert your child’s name here) mama is.  Your child immediately goes to the top of the list in their heads when opportunities reveal themselves

2. The Village Will Do Its Part: Faculty and staff will always make sure your child is behaving appropriately and if not, may go the extra mile to stave off trouble, because they know you and can depend on you to come up there and inject a dose of “act right”

3. Connections Now = Opportunities Later: This gives you an opportunity to network with other concerned (opportunity seeking) parents who will gladly share their connections as long as you are “in the circle”

4. Benefits of Reconnaissance: Gives you the chance to do some “information gathering” on the happenings (gossip) at the school.  Because it is a parent-teacher organization, the teachers attend and participate.  This gives you an opportunity to network and get the good, bad and ugly on teachers and classroom performance (important parent information for next school year).

5. Don’t Make Me Call Your Mama: Your presence will be felt by your child.  Everyone knows who (insert your child’s name here) mama is, so your child KNOWS everyone knows their name and they know if they get out of line, someone will call you!

6. Learn a Life Lesson: PTA is like life.  You must be in the know, you must know who to know, and you must be able to use what you know. Being involved in PTA is not about being “phony” or acting “proper”.  It is about getting the best bang for your buck (tax or tuition dollars!) for your child from this experience.    

7. One Bad Apple Can Spoil the Whole Bunch: You will get to know the parents and their kids.  Remember the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.  You will better equipped to determine whether your child should be hanging out with certain “elements”.  Teachers and other parents know which kids have “reputations that precede them” (eyebrow raised and lips twisted all the way up!!!!)

8.  Lead by Example: Volunteerism by us working folks is severely lacking in the African American community.  We say we are too busy taking care of ourselves & our families.   What better reason to volunteer than knowing your child will directly receive the benefits of your efforts?  Not to mention you are setting an example of the importance of giving back, to your child.  

I challenge everyone reading this article to make it your business to just pay the membership fee and vote this year, then maybe next year volunteer to assist on a project, then the following year, Chair a Committee…baby steps!  If Nothing else motivates you, look at your child’s face and know that they will not make it in this world if they are not educate and their successful education depends on you.  Will you be doing your part next school year…let me know!  

My Pride, Joy & Motivation

My Pride, Joy & Motivation

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