This Thursday in the DISD Board of Trustees meeting, there will be discussions about full day Pre-K, recess for students, and social and emotional health. They are all related and I'm excited that we are now shifting our focus more directly to our students than we have been the past few months.
Full day Pre-K: Great idea. We have a high number of parents with jobs that simply don't allow the flexibility to pick up and stay with their young children all day; furthermore, we have a statistically significant number of young children with children that are young and still have to go to school in the Dallas area. Full day Pre-K allows students to have a safe place to learn and their parents the ability to provide for those children. What happens otherwise? You have kids unattended or taken care of themselves or in the care of a slightly bigger child that also doesn't know what's going on. It doesn't guarantee that one or all of those kids end up damaged in some way, but the probability that things can go wrong is definitely higher when you have a 10 year old picking up and caring for a 4 year old.
Recess for Elementary School: Kids learn through play. PE is not the same as unstructured time for kids to test limits and explore. Kids have to be able to socialize to develop not only their relationships with people, but to strengthen their problem solving and decision making as well.
Social and Emotional Health: There is a need for resources and time specifically dedicated to addressing the mental health of our students. People are generally more volatile at a young age because they are in formation. The above two initiatives are part of establishing a healthy mind early on, but we can't forget our students that have already been through those years and are now paying the price. Mentally healthy students generally do better in the classroom.
Thank you, Dan Micciche, for pushing for ideas that could impact the next decade or more of students coming through DISD. If these pass, I'm sure they'll be right up with with breakfast for our students on your list of accomplishments.
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