Dads Take Your Child to School Day
by William Jackson, M.Edu.
Instructor with Edward Waters College
Daddy Blogger – Community Activist – Educator
The Florida Department of Education initiative:
Dads Take Your Child to School Day! The Department
of Family and Community Engagement is partnering on
this initiative. This event is similar to the Million Father
March that was held on the first day of school nationally.
As part of this initiative, fathers are asked to show their child
that they value and support their education by bringing them
to school on Wednesday, September 28th and that they
commit to being involved in their learning throughout the year.
This is a great opportunity to increase parental engagement,
especially among fathers, for the entire 2016-17 school year.
Last year, fathers, grandfathers, foster fathers, stepfathers,
uncles, cousins, big brothers, male caregivers, mentors and
family friends all showed their support for students across
the state through their participation. The excitement for
many students is continuing to blossom and the work
continues for academic growth and success. Fathers are
very important in the process of education, helping in laying
a foundation for the importance of maturing academically
and socially. Being a father requires continuous giving,
generosity, kindness, compassion, empathy, love and
dedication to another life besides their own.
Education is a life-long process that is influenced by
parental priorities and influence.
“Fathers can and do change the world one child
at a time.” William Jackson, M.Edu.
These are suggestions from a father, educator, and
community activist to encourage fathers to
participate and be engaged in the educational
process of their children from early childhood to
1. Fathers respect your child’s teacher(s)
One way to support education is to model respect for
teachers and administrators. Fathers speak more by
their actions than words, so visit schools and praise
teachers and administrators.
2. Fathers spend time in the school
Even though it might be tough to visit schools at
least once a month it makes a world of difference
in a child’s behavior and academic success. Spending
time means sacrificing a lunch time, overtime or
buddy time. The rewards are great, just look in
your child’s eyes and see.
3. Fathers listen to teachers not talk at them
Sometimes it is more valuable to listen than to speak.
Fathers must trust teachers to tell them the truth about
their children even if the truth hurts or challenges
making changes to discipline, doing homework,
requiring tutors or not participating in sports or after
school activities. The priority of school is education.
4. Fathers discipline with Love
Many of us have humorous stories of being disciplined
when we were of youthful vigor and energy. We
understood later we were wrong in some of our actions
and choices and that discipline was done with love.
So fathers must continue to have love in their hearts
and minds and discipline fairly and with love.
5. Fathers are Role Models
Fathers are the first role models, even when we don’t
think our kids are watching, they are and other kids do
too. So our actions speak louder than words. We can’t
say “do as I say and not do as I do” because we
send the wrong messages and set our actions and
words up to be hypocritical and without meaning.
6. Fathers are Teachers
When a father teaches it is by his actions not always
by his words. The first teacher should be the child’s
parents. They establish the foundation for future success.
Even if not a great student in school fathers can teach
their children from their mistakes to help their children
to be better academically and socially.
7. Fathers should share meals
A great time to share is when eating together. This is a
relaxing time to joke, share, encourage, engage in fun
conversation. Sharing meals should not be serious times,
but memorable ones starting with prayer.
Communication should be two ways that encourage the
kids to ask questions too.
8. Fathers Read to their Children
When my children where toddlers until middle school
their mother and I read to them at various times during
the day and when it was bed time. This created an
atmosphere where reading was fun. When
they were able to we allowed them to read to us. Even
though we divorced I still read to my children to keep
the consistency and fun of it. Fathers that are not strong
readers should read to their level and build as their
children build. Learning together should not be an
embarrassment it should be a cooperative effort to
show comprehension and literacy are vital.
9. Fathers Show Affection
Fathers cannot afford to be “hard” and unemotional,
this creates unstable emotional behaviors in children
that cause confusion and conflicting emotions for
stability and expression. Fathers have to model love,
proper affection, sensitivity, common sense,
compassion, tenderness. These are what children
need to learn to function in society.
10. Fathers Job is Never Done
At the time of this writing 2016 both my children
are in college, working, driving and in some
capacity they are still dependent on me. Fathering
is a lifelong responsibility even when children are
maturing into adults themselves. Fathers are the
cushions, the barriers that God has placed to make
the world less scary, less threatening and less
depressing when the challenges of life attack
Children need to know that daddy will be there
not just for money, but for encouragement, advice,
praise, love, prayers and sometimes just a silent
shoulder to listen and arms for reassuring hugs.
Fathers you must decide what kind of father you
want to be, it is a choice and personal decision.
Don’t try to be like any other father but who you
are. Don’t be fake, foolish or fraud, your children
will see right through you.
It is ok to be scared, nervous and apprehensive,
no one has all the answers, you have more life
experiences than your children so use that to
build on as a foundation of support and love.
“The Talk” with your kids:
http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2014/09/05/345891814/whats-your-take-on-nprthetalk how to make sure your child comes home.