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  • Writer's pictureRachel Langan

WCASD Volunteer Policy is Not Family Friendly

My oldest started at Hillsdale in 2006 and I had a child at Hillsdale every year thereafter until schools closed in March 2020.

I've seen a lot of changes in WCASD during that time period.

Back in the mid 2000s, parents and siblings were welcomed into school for class parties.

  • Now, there are few class parties.

  • Only a select number of parents may attend.

  • Siblings are not welcomed.

Parents used to be welcomed to volunteer at school.

  • Now, excessive background clearances are required just for a parent to be in the school building. (Yes this is designed to protect children but can we agree that most parents are not a threat to children's safety?)

  • Getting selected as a volunteer at school (or to attend a field trip) requires a parent to be a part of the PTO, which feels like an exclusive club, to those of us who cannot or choose not to attend the PTO meetings.

Parents used to be able to enter the school building.

  • Now, parents must have a reason to enter the building and are required to provide proof of entry (in the form of identification and reason for the visit.) Should parents be stopping at school without a reason? No, they should not. But my point is that it feels unwelcoming to be treated suspiciously at the door.

  • If you're lucky enough to show up at high school unannounced, or even if you have an appointment, you might find yourself face to face with a police officer, who will escort you to your meeting location. Does this feel friendly and welcoming? No, it does not. Generally, being escorted by a police officer means that you've done something wrong.

  • Parents are made to feel that they are doing something wrong by entering a school building.

Why has WCASD put parents in a position of being outsiders when parents should be treated as partners in their child's education?


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