Arming students with knowledge, not guns; mayor distributes dictionaries on first day of school.
Minneapolis Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton stood outside the school doors on September 3 and distributed dictionaries to students returning for classes at Sanford Middle School in south Minneapolis. "We must arm our children with knowledge, not guns," said Sayles Belton. "The entire community can help ensure students achieve academic success and each adult has a responsibility to demonstrate the value of education."
Throughout her tenure, Sayles Belton has actively supported public education. "The strength of Minneapolis has everything to do with the quality of our public schools," Sayles Belton said explaining her interest in promoting student achievement. Passing out the dictionaries, said Sayles Belton, is as much a symbolic message as a practical incentive to students. "By being here today, I am telling these young people that I care about their success and I am demonstrating to the adults in our community that we each can make a difference in a child's life."
Barbara Muir principal of Sanford Middle School, applauded the mayor's effort. "We are working hard here at Sanford to create a challenging, exciting atmosphere in which all students achieve academic excellence. By being here today, Mayor Sayles Belton reinforces the values we are promoting and inspirers students to do their best and succeed."
Sanford with 675 students, is a middle school (grades 6-8) which provides a school-wide reading program interdisciplinary team teaching, standards-based curriculum and an extended day program. Eighty-two percent of Sanford students qualify for free or reduced-priced lunches. Sayles Belton praised the school, "Sanford is committed to continuous improvement to ensure that each child masters basic skills. These young people, like those anywhere, can achieve success in a supportive environment."
The mayor solicited the donation of the 225 dictionaries she distributed from Target Stores and Bookmen, Inc. "I want to thank Target Stores, Bookmen and the many other wonderful corporations and businesses in our community who support our public schools and students, whether through employee volunteer programs, direct financial or in-kind contributions," said Sayles Belton.
Details: Amy Phenix at (612, 673-2156
RELATED ARTICLE: Ten Ways To Make a Difference
The mayor suggested 10 ways for parents to make a positive difference in a child's education:
* Make sure your child goes to school everyday and stays there. Students who attend school 95 percent of the time are more than twice as likely to pass the Basic Standards Test as are students with 85 percent attendance.
* Be positive about school and value education.
* Read to your child.
* Meet your child's teacher, attend parent-teacher meetings and exchange phone numbers.
* Turn off the TV so your child can do homework. Check the homework.
* Make sure your child gets enough sleep, and eats a nutritious breakfast.
* Get to know your child's friends.
* Make sure your child is properly cared for after school.
* Attend school celebrations, plays and other activities.
* Become active in the PTA, PTO or Site Council (your school's parent organization).
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|Title Annotation:||Minneapolis Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton|
|Publication:||Nation's Cities Weekly|
|Article Type:||Brief Article|
|Date:||Sep 28, 1998|
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