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Parents need positive words too

A great schoolteacher makes her students feel great about their achievements.

From star charts to graduation medallions, decades of educators know that children need positive re-enforcement if their good behavior and academic success is to be repeated.

But the need to be praised doesn’t end at age 18, and the Natchez-Adams School District recognizes that fact as well.

For several years now, in addition to honoring teachers of the year and an administrator of the year, the district has recognized the parents of the year.

In a day and age when a lack of parental involvement is arguably the biggest stumbling block to student success, such recognition is needed.

The parents who stand out in the crowd, who visit the schools regularly, and who are always willing to lend a hand, are the role models other, perhaps younger, parents need.

With a growing number of young, single parents, finding creative solutions to a lack of parental involvement is a community challenge.

Honoring parents for their work is a start, but the problem needs more attention.

Those unhappy with new trends in society — including distant parents — must realize change won’t come without help.

Congratulations to this year’s parents of the year, Robert Otkins, Michelle Roberts, Paula Morris, the Rev. Matthew Minor, Lisa Lewis, Alfred Banks, Viola Williams and the district winner, Arcola Sullivan.

We appreciate your work, but more important, your children appreciate you, too.

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