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11/19/03 - Winona

Students Take Parents to School

It's "Take Your Kids to Work Day, but in reverse. An East Texas School has created a new way to encourage parents to get more involved in their children's education; go to school with them for Winona's first ever "Take Your Parents to School Day."

Missy Bell never thought she would be back here again. On Wednesday Bell Sat in a darkened classroom, taking notes on the history of the Cold War, just in case there is a pop quiz. "There's a lot to learn and a lot I've forgotten," said Bell. Her classmate is her own daughter, Brandy. "I just wanted to see what it was like to be Brandy. To go through the day with her and see what she goes through every day."

Just down the hall, more parents share desks with their children. "I've learned a few words of Spanish, a little bit of history, and that I have no music talent," said Winona father Mark Thacker. The school says that is the whole point of the day.

"They get a better understanding of what we're doing in the classroom," explains Principal Brent Rumbo. Rumbo helped invent "Take Your Parent to School Day" as part of a parental outreach program. "We do want them up here. We do understand the important role that they play in the education process."

But what do the kids think about the extra adults in the cafeteria and in the halls? Missy Bell's daughter Brandy likes the idea. "I'm glad that my mom came because now she gets to see what I do every day in all my classes, so when I'm talking about it at home, she'll actually know what I'm talking about."

Around 100 parents showed up at school. That's more than Winona I.S.D. had expected. The district plans to make "Take Your Parent to School Day" an annual event.

Stephen Parr, reporting.

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