Magazine article Work & Family Life

'Visible Volunteering' Best Bet for Busy Parents

Magazine article Work & Family Life

'Visible Volunteering' Best Bet for Busy Parents

Article excerpt

Q Last year I let myself get roped into every bad job the PTA couldn't find anyone else to do (like driving all over town picking up raffle donations), and I got very little thanks for my efforts. This year I want to be a little smarter and a lot more realistic about what I agree to take on as a volunteer at my kids' school. Any suggestions?

-P.K., Baltimore, MD

A Our schools need and appreciate the work of parent-volunteers, and our kids benefit too. Many studies have found that children do better academically when their parents get involved. But busy working parents need to volunteer wisely. Here are some ideas:

X Be more visible. Balance behind-the-scenes work with activities that put you front and center at school events.

X Do what you do best. Schools need volunteers with many different skills: building, baking, communicating and organizing. You can accomplish a lot more if you don't have to learn the job first. …

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