Parent Organizations Enhance Education
Byline: Adeline Dobbins
As the holidays wind down, Bloomingdale residents anticipate a new year filled with challenges and opportunities.
Addressing specific challenges and opportunities are Bloomingdale Elementary District 13 parent organizations, an integral part of the school community.
Pat Bach, DuJardin School's Parent-Teacher-Organization president, says parent groups help schools achieve a common goal - ensuring children get the best education possible.
The DuJardin PTO accomplishes this by sponsoring fun events for students and by raising money to purchase items that enhance their educational experience. The PTO recently paid for new playground equipment, art supplies and computer software.
"I want the future to be in good hands," Bach said. "I think I can also speak for many other dedicated parents when I say that Hillary Clinton is right when she says, 'It takes a village to raise a child.' We all must become involved."
Pam Hager, Erickson School's PTO president, says the organization's main focus is community involvement. The school's major Thanksgiving Feast event in November, and various holiday charity programs like the Sharing Tree, helped students realize they are creditable members of the community.
"If they feel they are part of a larger group of people, they are apt to give back more as they get older," Hager said.
Erickson's PTO also sponsors fund-raisers such as poinsettia sales and family fun nights to support assemblies and provide science project materials.
Westfield School's Student-Teacher-Parent Organization sponsors magazine drives and hot lunch days to support the school's annual drama production, trips for honor roll students, student appreciation day activities and the seventh-grade "Art Works," a program that brings in local artists to enhance the students' artistic awareness.
Marge Matthew, the organization's president, describes the group's main goal as providing money for all the "extras" that students and staff really appreciate. …