Aldine ISD Superintendent of Schools Dr. LaTonya Goffney has a message for faith-based leaders in the area: Tutor our kids. Volunteer in our schools. Be a mentor. Help spread the word about important initiatives to help students succeed.
“Aldine ISD needs your help to give our students additional support to reach their academic potential,” Goffney said Monday, April 8 during at the Partners of Excellence luncheon that attracted more than 20 leaders from churches and other faith-based organizations.
The goal? Ensure students are reading at third-grade level by third grade. Additionally, help provide options to families looking to keep kids engaged in activities that promote good citizenship and social development.
“Some of you have already been mentoring, and working with Aldine students,” Goffney said. “But there are gaps. We want to reach all students and give them opportunities. Many of your places of worship are located in the communities where our students’ families live. You offer programs that engage families in positive ways like language classes or a gym where kids have a safe haven to play sports.
“Some of you have connections that provide field trips and experiences that our students need to open their minds to the many possibilities they have for their future.“
Attendees were asked to fill out a survey to help determine important topics and issues to discuss and tackle. The faith-based leaders also shared how they can help the District as well as how AISD can help them.
“There are so many opportunities for you to engage and for you to be involved in what we’re doing,” Sheleah Reed, chief communications officer, told the crowd.
Examples included committing to getting involved in a variety of ways — from providing academic support through activities like tutoring to providing basic student needs such as clothing and food. Some of the other possibilities include guest speaking for classrooms; one-on-one mentoring with students and coaching; chaperoning field trips; promoting school activities and events.
This was the second meeting held with faith-based leaders this school year. District leaders also provided updates regarding the school finance and the 86th legislative regular session. The Texas House recently approved a major school finance reform package (HB3), which adds teacher raises to the bill. The legislation would increase per-student funding and mandate across-the-board teacher pay raises. While many see this as a step in the right direction, the District is cautiously optimistic. Goffney lauded HB3 but realizes the fight is not over. She and district leaders hope the bill, which now makes its way to the Senate, will be fully funded by the state to make every mandate sustainable. If the state does provide full support, it would be a boon to school districts, including Aldine ISD. (Click to view Aldine ISD’s legislative agenda.)
“Districts that have more challenges like Aldine need more money to meet student needs,” stated Goffney. “We met with lawmakers earlier this year and it is exciting to see that legislators see the value and importance in fully funding prekindergarten programs, expanding funding to provide career and technical education to sixth-grade students and much more.“
District leaders also shared upcoming events and initiatives to share with the community:
Please contact the Office of Communications at (281) 985-6202 or email [email protected] if you would like to form part of the Partners of Excellence, take part in a steering committee or visit a school.
Director of Written Communication & Spanish Media
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