Stand UP (University for Parents) at Peabody!

Starts Tuesday, September 17th, 2013!

gingerBy Ginger Spickler, Peabody parent

During the 2012-2013 school year, I had the good fortune to work with a brand new program in the Memphis area, called Stand UP (University for Parents). My role was to facilitate a discussion among a group of parents at local elementary schools about how they could best support their children in school. It was a tremendously rewarding experience, not only because I got to meet so many incredible parents who were willing to invest time in becoming the best parents they could be, but also because I learned so much myself!

The most shocking thing that we learned was that in the legacy Memphis City Schools, only about 5% of students are currently graduating college-ready. What is “college-ready”? That means that a student will be able to get into college and start college-level courses — not have to waste time and money on remedial classes covering material they should have learned in high school. Five-percent is a sobering statistic — it means that right now, the odds are not good that many of our Peabody Eagles will be ready for college or career by the time they graduate.

So how can we, as Peabody parents, make sure that not only our own children are going to be college-ready, but that every other Peabody student will be as well? The Stand UP course covers exactly that information in detail.

For example:

  • How to know if your child is on track academically

  • How to have an effective parent-teacher conference (and, yes, you should be having them even if you think everything is going fine!)

  • How to build character traits needed for success in school, like responsibility and self-control

  • How to understand what your child’s TCAP scores really mean for their college-readiness

Stand UP is a 10-week course (including the Intro Meeting on Sept. 10 and Graduation on Nov. 19) that will meet from 6:00-7:30 every Tuesday night at Peabody. Child care and class materials are both free.

As a parent, I know exactly how valuable your time is, and that you can’t take this kind of commitment lightly. However, just as our teachers participate in professional development every year to ensure that they are up to the task of educating our children, I believe that we need to be doing “parental development” so that we, as their first and primary teachers, are ready to support them in the most effective ways possible.


Please Note: We will have a special guest at Peabody’s Stand UP Intro Meeting on Sept. 10 — Jonah Edelman, the co-founder and CEO of Stand for Children. Stand for Children is a non-profit working to ensure that all children in our nation, regardless of their background, graduate from high school prepared for, and with access to, a college education. Mr. Edelman is the son of Marian Wright Edelman, a long-time activist for the rights of children and founder of the Children’s Defense Fund. Let’s show Mr. Edelman that Peabody is a place where parents are committed to the success of every child that walks through our doors!

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