LETTER: Parents, students, community need to step up

To the Editor:


I was very frustrated by the article on the Dist. 279 American Indian Program. The points I found extremely frustrating were that of  teachers needing to identify what students would benefit, the need for family activities planned at night, and not knowing what was available.

It is the parents and the students themselves that need to take the responsibility in identifying who would benefit from the program. As a parent, you need to advocate for your child, teach them to advocate for themselves and follow up with doing the work yourself to make sure that happens. If my child is interested in something, I look on the school website, call or email the school, look in the local newspapers, talk with their friends’ families or research on the internet. It is not the schools responsibility, but your own.

“….the committee would like to see more opportunities for family activities in the evenings that support the native culture and community.” Again, it is the responsibility of the parents and students themselves as well as the Native American community to make this happen, not the school. If my kids want to plan a family event with their sports team, it is the parents and kids that organize it, find a place for it to be held (often someone’s home or a park) , provide all the food or entertainment/activities, and provide all the communication with the other members, not the school.

As far as not knowing what was available, I went to the district 279 website, searched American Indian program and it provides a page with contact names, numbers and meeting times/places. Call someone on that list and ask.

What are we teaching our students/children if we expect someone else to meet their needs but aren’t willing to put in the time/work ourselves?


Laura Houfek

Maple Grove