Trustee Dan Micciche’s commitment to helping students soar to success can be seen in his efforts to recruit community members to tutor students. Below is an excerpt from his column, which appears each month in the White Rock Lake Weekly.
Ordinary citizens can make extraordinary impact
If you have ever doubted the effect of community involvement on student outcomes, take a look at Lee McShan Jr. Elementary School in Vickery Meadow, which had the highest score on Dallas ISD’s school effectiveness index out of 150 elementary schools.
One big reason for the school’s success is Dalene L. Buhl and the army of over 100 volunteers, including a large contingent from Preston Hollow Presbyterian Church that she has recruited to be reading tutors at the school. They have worked hand in hand with an outstanding team of educators led by Principal Dayanna Kelly.
McShan is one of the highest poverty schools in the district: 98 percent of the students are economically disadvantaged; it has a large refugee population; and 87 percent of the students at the school are English language learners.
The “school effectiveness index” is a measure of performance of the school’s effect on student outcomes by controlling for differences the school cannot control, such as socio-economic status, neighborhood characteristics, and prior-year academic levels.
Reading is the foundation for all other subjects
If you’re looking to make a lasting impact on kids, get involved in a tutoring program that focuses on helping students read on grade level. If we can ensure that all of our students read on level by third grade, it is a fact that they will do better in school, have a better chance at attending and completing a collegiate program, and succeeding in life.
Every child deserves a great beginning, no matter their socioeconomic status, race, or gender, and great beginnings start with each of us, just ordinary citizens, advocating for children everywhere.
How to get involved
Check with your neighborhood school or visit: http://dallasisd.voly.org to start your remarkable journey. The tutoring commitment is one or two hours per week. Training and a structured curriculum is provided. You can help change the world for a child.
January is School Board Recognition Month, a time to thank local leaders for their dedication and willingness to serve as advocates for children and public schools. Dallas ISD joins other districts across the state in recognizing the work of its board.