Nearly 200 families gathered at Taylors Creek Elementary on Tuesday to enjoy a complimentary chicken dinner and gear up for next month’s Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests.
“The CRCT is a very important time for parents to remember to make sure their child gets eight to 10 hours of rest each night, send the child off to school with positive thoughts and make sure their child gets to school on time,” TCE Principal Debbie Rodriguez said of the state-mandated test.
Parents and their children filled the school’s cafeteria and dined on chicken, breadsticks, mashed potatoes and Italian ices at tables covered in green tablecloths and freshly cut flowers.
The event also featured a Scholastic book fair in the media center, and media specialist Mary Lewis monitored students who came in with their parents to take Accelerated Reader tests and CRCT practice tests.
“It’s just a time for parents to get a free meal and family time,” Lewis said of the Family Supper. “It’s just kind of a good time of gathering for family and communities.”
The test is scheduled for April 11-15 for the entire Liberty County School System.
Albert West Jr. decided to attend the event to learn about what his fifth-grade daughter, Alexcia West, needs to know for her upcoming tests and to make sure he understands the process.
“(I came) just to show my daughter some support with what she does … to make sure she is getting her studies done right,” West said.
In addition to accumulating points for AR tests and practicing for the CRCT, attendees also joined the school’s coach for a “family fun run” in the gymnasium where they burned off calories from the meal.
“My favorite part of the event was having parent/child together time,” Rodriguez said. “Families are so busy these days, and I love to see them take a break, kick back and just enjoy being together. It is also heart-warming to see dads and moms reading with their children.”
Parents sat in on an education briefing by school counselor Sasha Quarles, who offered tips for raising well-rounded children.
“Just remember, everyone measures success differently,” Quarles told parents and students. The counselor gave parents handouts that contained researched-based information from various health and government websites. Her slideshow focused on sleep, exercise, good attendance and student preparation.
Quarles emphasized the importance of getting enough rest and said that most children need about 12 hours, ideally, of sleep each night.
“It is really important children get enough sleep,” Quarles said. “As Americans, from what I’ve researched, we’re all sleep-deprived.”
Parent Dana Frasier was impressed with Quarles’ presentation. Frasier, whose daughter Alana is a third-grader at Taylors Creek, said she found the information helpful.
“She presented herself as professional, knowledgeable and approachable. While the information was informative, I believe the warmth and generosity she displayed was far more appreciated,” Frasier said. “I left the workshop with information about proper nutrition, but more importantly, I left the workshop feeling like she is a caring educator who is concerned for all of her students.”