My name is April Lindley Jackson, and I am the Parent Outreach Coordinator for Stand for Children at Reynolds High School. I signed up with Stand because when I grew up, I didn’t have a parent helping to guide me through high school. My father raised us alone, and when he’d leave for military deployments, I raised myself and my three siblings on my own. I didn’t have a plan for school or a roadmap to get to graduation day until I moved in with a friend. It felt like a miracle that I graduated on time with my classmates, but really it was the support my friend’s parents gave me in their home that helped me succeed.
Parents can help students avoid small mistakes that have a big impact on their lives. We can help our kids set goals and make sure they have the support they need to graduate on time. We can make sure they’re ready for college, a career, or both.
That starts by making sure ninth graders are adjusting to life in high school. Freshmen are responsible for homework and attendance in a way that middle-schoolers aren’t. If students aren’t prepared for that change, they can dig themselves a hole in three months that’s so deep they never recover.
I’ve been in that hole. I know how hard it was for me to get out of it, and I don’t want my own daughter or any of her classmates to go through it. As a Stand for Children Parent Outreach Coordinator, I’m giving parents the information they need so their kids can avoid these pitfalls.
At our High School Success Night, more than 50 parents, teachers, counselors and even the vice principal joined a conversation about how parents can provide support and structure their kids need. We explained the number of credits students need to earn each year. We connected parents with teachers and fellow parents to build a network for information and support.
Becoming an Outreach Coordinator with Stand for Children is my way of helping my daughter’s classmates get the support they need to succeed. If you are interested in joining the Stand for Children family, either as an Outreach Coordinator or simply as an engaged parent, please contact Nawwal Moustafa at firstname.lastname@example.org.