By Hermann Pereira
We keep up with news in a variety of ways and are inundated with information 24/7. We can read a headline or a social media post and get stirred to be on one side of an issue or another. I have found that the best thing to do in those moments is to focus on the most important thing, and more times than not it is people.
This is especially true when you discuss education. Students are our focus because they are the future of Waco. They deserve our very best, but as adults we lose sight of that at times. I know I have been guilty of this myself.
Many of the issues our students face can be alleviated if the adults would step up and keep students as the focus.
-- Students deserve facilities they take pride in and that are safe and welcoming.
-- Students deserve to have opportunities for rigorous academics, fine arts, career and technical education, and athletics.
-- Students deserve to have equal access to college and career opportunities.
-- Students deserve to have caring educators, counselors, administrators, and mentors pouring into their lives each and every day.
The things our students deserve should not hinge upon the tax base around them, who is on the school board, the neighborhood they grew up in, or the color of their skin.
If you are like me, I am always thinking about how I can help. So if you read this article and are stirred to get involved here are a few things that come to mind:
Support schools -- Show up to your local school and ask how you can help. Volunteering or signing up for a PTA would be a huge help.
Run for school board -- Everyone is able to run for a school board seat in the district they live in. It is a wonderful way to support the local ISD and help to set policy for the district.
Vote -- Currently in Waco ISD there is a vote for a large bond to build four new campuses.
Mentor -- Sign up to be a mentor. There are a number of organizations so if you are interested, send me an email and I can point you in the right direction.
Join an advisory board -- Many of our high schools have advisory boards that assist the schools with the implementation of career and technology education.
Donate to teachers -- You can donate directly to teachers on websites like donorschoose.org, Amazon, and adoptaclassroom.org.
If you want to have a conversation about this and/or other topics about our community please feel free to reach out -- firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hermann Pereira is chief program officer for Prosper Waco and leads its education and workforce initiatives.