Back-To-School-Night. Young children writing their parents letters to be left on their own desks so that the parents can know where their children sit, and how much their children love them. Slightly older children completeing art projects to be displayed around the classroom to show off to their parents. Parking tags for sale in the lobby so that high school students who drive to school can purchase them. PTSA membership forms to fill out and turn in. Right? We parents can't wait, right? Wait, you didn't remember the parking tags? Ahhhh, but that's a high school Back-To-School-Night thing. How many of you can't wait to go to your high school child's back to school night? Not many, not many!!
But, you know how it goes: "How was your first week of school hon?" "OK." End of story. As they get older and better able to communicate non-stop with their phones, Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr, we parents hear less and less from them. "Moooooom, I'm TALKING to someone, can you stop TALKING to me for a sec?" "Daaaaaad, I TOLD you, I have no idea why my Algebra teacher wants me to get a different calculator, she just DOES." "Can you JUST leave me aLONE for a while?"
BTSN is the first step when parenting a teenager, to helping navigate through your child's world at school. You'll get to roam the same building that your child is expected to get through from one end to the other in 5 minutes, or so they say when they try to explain why they are always late to their American Government class - "But MOM. Don't you know, the gym is ALL the way on the OTHER side of the building from my Government class! I CAN'T get there in time". After BTSN, you can tell them you did it. You'll be able to meet some of the coaches who spend seemingly more time with your kid than you do. You'll be able to get a glimpse of what your child is set to learn this school year as you tour their class rooms according to their schedules. It truly is a way for you to become more involved with your high school student's life. And, as a mom who works in a high school, closely with many of your children, I can tell you, as much as they complain about how they don't need you to be involved anymore, they are secretly or not, more often than not, thrilled that you are still interested enough to attend back to school night and do things with their schools.
So. . . if you visit the following school board's link to back to school nights (http://www.bcps.org/news/back-to-school.html), you can find out when YOUR child's back-to-school night is. Or, more specifically, I will tell you a few of the local dates for our high schools:
Parkville High School and Center for Mathematics, Science and Computer Science: September 13 from 6p-8p
Parkville Middle School: Oops, it happened September 5 :(
Pine Grove Middle School: 6th grade only - September 12
Loch Raven Academy: September 12 from 6:30 - 8:30
As you might imagine, I am particularly interested in the Parkville High School Back-To-School Night. Did you know? I am not only thrilled to work at the school, but also am the PTSA president at the school. I not only get to see your children's happy (!) faces on a daily basis, I would like to see your smiling faces as well. In the high school setting, we don't have as much of a need for those room mothers that they had in elementary school. Nor do we often utilise parents for copying the mountains of paperwork that teachers produce. But we love our parents, and we want to see more of them. We want to involve them in the activites at our school. Help with selling spirit wear. Volunteer with the Athletic Boosters selling food at football games. Help at Homecoming dance with the food part of things. Sorting spirit wear into bags when there are large orders. We can find you a spot, if you really, really want to volunteer your time, trust me.
Which brings me to mind of this. Have you joined your child's school's PTSA yet? On the high school level, dues are $9 per adult, $7 per student. And, at the high school level, students are expected to be members in order to benefit from things like scholarships and other bonuses. Do you want to find out what that often spoke of Post Prom Party is? That's sponsored by the PTSA. Do you want to get to know your child's teacher better? They come to PTSA meetings. The PTSA is really one of the great things about high school and continued involvement with your child's school-life. Come to our Back To School Night from 6-8 at Parkville High School, meet your child's teachers, walk their school, and maybe even buy a potted mum for $6 to benefit our PTSA's Post Prom Party and to beautify your home!