School will be out on Saturday morning at Middle School North but parents from across the district are invited to get a firsthand look at what is happening in the district with the Third Annual Howell Township Parent Academy.
The event starts at 8:30 a.m. and runs until 1:30 p.m. Lisa Parshelunis, a teacher at Griebling School who is helping to organize the event said it will be a full day for those in attendance.
One of the biggest changes for this year is the addition of a keynote speaker. Jersey Shore native and former Shore Conference football player Keith Elias who went on to a successful career at Princeton University before playing for the New York Giants and Indianapolis Colts will be a can't miss event for parents. "He will speak about the power of words and how it shapes our identity," Parshelunis said.
While sometimes actions speak louder than words, Parshelunis said what children say can be important to parents and vice versa. "Parents have the power to see behind their children's masks and really help shape and define a child's identity using stories from his personal life," she said. "His message goes hand in hand with the Parent Academy's mission to enhance student success by strengthening the partnership between parents, community and educators."
In addition to Elias the day will feature a variety of classes parents can attend. They include a discussion on the district's new standards based report cards, making the transition from elementary school to middle school as well as from middle school to high school and workshops for various subjects.
In addition to feeding the intellect of parents, there will also be lunch provided as part of the day. The "Taste of Howell," will include entertainment and raffle prizes with food provided by restaurants around town. There will also be other items provided by the PTA's and PTO's across the district as well as SEPAC.
Memorial Middle School Principal Laurie Bandlow said she is looking forward to what she hopes will be an informative and successful event for everyone involved. "We're hoping to get a great turnout," she said.
Since its inception Bandlow said the event has evolved in an effort to provide the best content to the district's parents. "Our mission is staying connected with our community and our parents to the benefit of the children in Howell to help their academic achievement and success," she said.
Each year she said not only do the programs improve but the goal is also to bring more parents to see everything that is offered. "The biggest key is getting folks to come out," she said. "Each year I feel it gets better and better and the teachers have just run with it."
The event is free of charge to all parents and free childcare is being offered by the Howell PAL for children five-years-old and up. Registration for childcare is required on the event's website but parents can sign up for the event itself when they arrive on Saturday morning.