Southside PTO works for students

Published 11:26 pm Thursday, December 18, 2008

A woman scooped piles of spaghetti as big as softballs into Styrofoam plates at the Southside High School cafeteria.

She slid the plate down the steel-rail counter. Another woman tossed crunchy, green iceberg lettuce into one compartment and placed a warm, buttery roll into another.

“We have a team approach,” Dorothy Adams said, as she looked on the assembly line. “The educational process of our students involves parents, staff, faculty and the community.”

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The Southside High PTO held a spaghetti dinner Thursday night to benefit the athletic department and the marching band.

Adams, the school’s parent facilitator, said Southside needs all the support it can get since proration is on the horizon. The marching band needs new uniforms, athletic fields need work and classrooms always need supplies. Adams said community support and parental involvement could help students reach their potential.

The Southside PTO usually meets the first Monday of every month and is doing everything it can to get parents involved with their children, said P.T.O. president Valerie Reubin.

“We try to be out here even though some parents have jobs,” Reubin said.

The PTO also brings in guest speakers and provides popcorn and movies for children during meetings. This makes it easier for busy parents to attend the meetings each month.

“We call it PTO and family night,” Adams said.

Southside High also encourages parental involvement through the “I Care Program.”

The program is close to Adams’ heart. Teachers implement a character word each month that the students learn and discuss with their parents.

The PTO will face another challenge soon. In January, Southside High will require students to wear uniforms. Adams said some lower-income students would need help purchasing them. She hopes the PTO will be able to assist these students.

“We want our students to dress for success.”