May 13, 2004
Teachers say thanks
On behalf of the faculty at West Lauderdale Middle School, I would like to thank the WLMS Parent/Teacher Organization, LeAnne Motes, Renee Covert, Ryan's Steak House and the many students and parents who helped make Teacher Appreciation Week a huge success.
Each day, the teachers received goodies and home-made treats that curbed our hunger and made us feel appreciated. There were signs posted in the halls and work room that reminded us that we were "the best" and that we "held it all together" at school each day. On Wednesday, we were served a luncheon provided by the WLMS PTO and Ryan's Steak House. What a surprise!
Since last week was also Mississippi Curriculum Testing, these acts of kindness helped so many of us feel relaxed and special during a stressful time at school. I can't tell you the many times that teachers need that kind of relief.
I feel that I can speak for all of the WLMS teachers in saying thanks to all of the people who had a hand in helping with the Teacher Appreciation celebration at our school last week. It is nice to feel appreciated, respected and special.
Mary Hill Shular
West Lauderdale Middle School
Preparing tomorrow's parents
The time is here when we give special recognition to parents all the way through Father's Day.
Parenting is one of the most important things we do as human beings and as citizens. Eighty percent of Americans become parents, yet far too few are prepared for this awesome task.
This year, we can participate in Preparing Tomorrow's Parents Month, from now through Father's Day. Thank parents for what they do and celebrate the importance of quality parenting by helping create a better future for all children.
If you have contact with children or teens at home, school or elsewhere please do at least one activity during this time to build skills in empathy, nurturing and communication, and knowledge in child development and appropriate discipline among young people.
Parenting education is a necessary part of education for all. Preparing young people to become caring and competent parents may be the single most effective way to prevent child abuse and other forms of violence and increase the mental health, school preparedness and academic success of future generations. Students who understand the responsibilities of raising children are also more motivated to delay parenting past their teen years. Further, these skills for future parenting help create more caring, cooperative and effective classrooms from the day they are taught.
To learn more about how and why to prepare young people for parenting, contact The Parenting Project, a national, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated since 1995 to bringing parenting education to all children and teens. Visit www.parentingproject.org, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-888-parents.
City can do better
In the month of June, Meridian will host its Meridianite Mississippi Picnic, which more than 5,000 former citizens of Meridian are scheduled to attend. Our merchants and hotels will benefit a great deal from this occasion because thousands of dollars will be spent in this city.
Our city leaders have known about this occasion for several years. But still they waited almost a year to start paving our city streets. I am embarrassed to know that these former citizens have to endure driving on these heavily-damaged streets. I say shame on our city leaders for failing to maintain our city streets, not only for this particular function, but all functions. It is time for the citizens of this city to wake up and see the light, because we can do better.
John Nelson Jr.