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Parents, teachers get involved at GHS

Greenville High School principal Dr. Kathy Murphy held an organizational meeting Monday night for a new parent/teacher group for the high school.

The group, which will be called VIPS – Volunteers Interested Parents Students/Staff, will not be affiliated with the national Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) or Parent Teacher Association (PTA).

&uot;Some of our students think that being associated with PTO or PTA is too elementary and definitely not cool,&uot; Murphy said. &uot;We are trying to get a different slant with the VIPS acronym, and hope it will be beneficial in how the children see their parents coming in and working with us at the school.&uot;

Murphy said the purpose of the organization is to get parents involved with the school.

&uot;We are all in this together,&uot; she said. &uot;One of our greatest responsibilities is to fulfill the parents’ expectations of this school. We want to make sure that parents feel welcome and are here to help us achieve those expectations.&uot;

The high school administrator said it has been about five years since Greenville High has had a parent/teacher organization. She feels the group will be invaluable in keeping the school on track.

&uot;My primary reason for wanting this group is that I need a sounding board,&uot; Murphy said. &uot;I need to be able to bounce ideas off them, and have them tell me they agree or disagree or even have their own ideas. I really need the parents to do that for me.&uot;

Murphy also says the group will be instrumental in helping her maintain the proper perspective on actions needed for the school.

&uot;I sometimes forget the perspective of the parent or child in my role as adminstrator,&uot; she said. &uot;I think this group will be able to remind me of that role.&uot;

Perhaps the greatest need in forming the VIPS organization is a financial one, the principal pointed out.

&uot;It’s my understanding that the school system will be in 14 percent proration next year,&uot; Murphy said. &uot;This school has needs that the school board will simply not be able to meet.&uot;

She said that some immediate examples are new band uniforms and work that needs to be done on the school auditorium stage.

&uot;We are currently investing $421 on the offstage area of the auditorium to build shelves and racks for costumes for the theatre/drama classes,&uot; she said. &uot;They forgot to do that when they built this facility. We won’t be able to get these kinds of things paid for by the central office once proration hits – we will need to be able to come up with that money on our own.&uot;

About 50 parents and teachers attended the VIPS organizational meeting and elected officers for the remainder of the year.

Leslee Pritchett volunteered for the President’s position, and will be joined by Brenda Mitchell as Vice President and Amanda Phillips as Secretary/Treasurer.

&uot;I am really excited about getting this group started,&uot; Pritchett said. &uot;We’ve wanted to do this for many years, but didn’t know how.&uot;

Pritchett feels the main goal of the organization will be to let the students know their parents want to be involved with their school.

&uot;This group will give parents insight into what’s happening with their children,&uot; she said. &uot;Our children don’t let us know what’s going on many times when they reach the high school level. But the more we can be here, around the teachers and other parents, the better off every one will be.&uot;

Vice President Mitchell echoed Pritchett’s sentiments.

&uot;I was used to being very involved with my children through the Middle School’s program,&uot; she said. &uot;I want to continue that involvement with my children at the high school.&uot;

Phillips added that the group can also be an outlet for selling the school to the community.

&uot;I think one of the best kept secrets in Butler County is Greenville High School,&uot; she said. &uot;When businesses come to town, we need to bring them over here and show them what we have. We have a great school, and we need to market it.&uot;

The VIPS officers have agreed to meet at the end of the month to discuss ideas for fundraising and setting up guidelines for the group. The tentative plans discussed at the meeting are to charge $5 for membership dues and meet at least once a month.

For more information about the VIPS group, call GHS at 382-2608.