Pickens Elementary earns $22,000 grant for Parent Partnership

The United Way of Pickens County and Cliffs Residents Outreach-Vineyards Non-Profits have awarded Pickens Elementary a $22,000 school improvement grant to conduct a school-wide Parents As Learners (PALS) Program.

The program will bring parents and school staff together to learn how families can most effectively engage in education.

“I can’t wait to start working with parents in the Pickens Elementary community and giving them tools to support the success of their child,” said Donna Harden, PES principal.

Through the PALS program, parents will learn how to:

• Communicate with students, teachers, principal, and school officials;

• Ensure a successful parent-teacher conference;

• Use Schoology to check online for student grades, attendance, and other vital information;

• Help students with homework assignments;

• Understand classroom, school, and district report cards;

• Keep children safe and responsible on the Internet; and

• Access parenting resources.

“The part of the program that focuses on guiding the child’s online activity is something that is in very high demand from our parents. ‘Digital parenting’ is not something most parents have intuition for because it wasn’t a part of our own childhood experience,” Harden said.

The grant provides for free T-shirts, dinners, and childcare during the learning sessions, as well as chances to win free iPads and Chromebooks.

“We’re very grateful to the Cliffs Communities and the United Way for making this program possible. Parents are the child’s first teacher, so I know anything we can do to help our parents will make an enormous impact,” Harden said.

This story courtesy of The Easley Progress.