School district’s Parent of the Year surprised by the honor

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 14, 2001

With her five children sitting around her, Sabine Farmer finds it funny that she was selected as the Natchez-Adams School District Parent of the Year.

&uot;We’re so normal,&uot; she said with a laugh.

Her oldest daughter, Johanna, 14, a ninth-grader at Natchez High School, does not find it so surprising.

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&uot;I would think she would make it because she’s a good parent,&uot; Johanna Farmer said. &uot;It’s not surprising to me.&uot;

Farmer, whose five children, Johanna, Jimmy, Leah, Rachel and Benjamin span almost every level of education offered by the Natchez-Adams School District, was first selected as Parent of the Year for West Primary School and later selected as the district’s winner.

&uot;Actually I thought that was very funny,&uot; Farmer said about the honor. &uot;I never never ever thought – not me – not parent of the year.&uot;

Her husband, Butch, has his own theory, Farmer said.

&uot;(He) says it’s probably because I have five rug rats running around in school,&uot; Farmer said laughing.

Farmer, who is a native of Germany, moved to the United States from Berlin with her children about four years ago to begin a German translation business with a friend who lives in Slidell, La.

She moved to Natchez three years ago after meeting her husband. Upon doing so, she soon involved herself with the public school system especially West Primary School.

&uot;I love West Primary,&uot; she said. &uot;I think it’s a super super school,&uot; she said.

She has served on the school’s title one committee and assists with school parties, field trips and other activities.

&uot;I just like the school,&uot; she said. &uot;They treat the children like little human beings.&uot;

She also has volunteered at McLaurin Elementary School and is active with the Natchez High School Band Boosters, where her daughter Johanna plays the clarinet.

Farmer says she could never be the type of parent who just drops their children off at school so someone else could deal with them.

&uot;I want to know what they’ve learned,&uot; she said. &uot;I want to know how they’re being treated.&uot;

Farmer and her husband also believe in letting their children try a variety of activities.

Music is one activity popular with the children right now with Jimmy playing the trumpet and Leah playing the flute in their school bands. And Sabine and Rachel are both teaching themselves how to play the violin.

&uot;We let them try anything,&uot; Farmer said.

But they also insist that the children finish out the activities they begin.

&uot;I think that’s important – to stick with what you start (and) to try to do your best even though you might not be the best,&uot; Farmer said.

She is also pleased with the education her children are receiving with the public school system.

&uot;You can be all that you can be in a public school,&uot; she said.

Farmer will now advance to the state Parent of the Year competition.