PATERSON, NJ- The Paterson Public Schools’ Department of Family and Community Engagement kicked off their “Parent University” program on Wednesday.
“Parent University” is a district-wide parent educational program that is designed to teach and expose parents & stakeholders to the tools needed to support their children through their educational journey.
Workshops are funded by the US Department of Education, with local support for the lunch that was served from the Fabian Theater and Little Caesars.
Through the program Paterson parents will be able to attend monthly sessions covering a wide range of topics including: health and nutrition, academics, parenting & awareness, personal development, gang awareness, ESL classes for parents and more.
Several community groups including Oasis: A Haven for Women and Children and the Paterson Neighborhood Assistance Office attended the lunchtime event.
Speaking to the crowd Mayor Jane Warren-Williams said that “the City and Paterson Public Schools must be partners and stand together to educate our children”.
Warren-Williams’ comments were echoed by Acting Superintendent Eileen Shafer who also expressed her support for the program saying that Paterson’s schools “must be responsive to parents and their needs and concerns for educating their children.”
“Better educated and informed parents will have better educated and informed children,” said Kemper McDowell, Director of the Department of Family and Community Engagement.
District Parent Coordinator Mark Fischer, who is responsible for the day to day coordination of “Parent University” offered his thoughts that the program goes beyond collecting data and determining needs, it is, he said, about “taking action.”