Butler County Schools initiates Million Father March Monday

Published 6:22 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2016

In an effort to bridge the gap between school and community, the Butler County Board of Education will join in the Million Father March on the morning of Sept. 19.

The Million Father March is a chance for men to show their commitment to the educational lives of their children on a day of school, and also throughout the school year.

Though the event takes place during the course of a single day, it’s also symbolic of a year-long commitment from men to contribute to their children’s educational success.

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Otis Grayson, career coach with the Butler County Career Academy, said that incorporating the national movement on a local level aligned with the Butler County School System’s ideals.

“Mrs. Amy Bryan, Mrs. Jennifer Burt and I were thinking of ways to get the community involved in education,” Grayson said. “Through some research, Mrs. Burt actually found a website that talked about the Million Father March.  She passed the information on to me, and I contacted the national headquarters and registered Butler County to be a site for it. They sent me the information and told me that we could create our own innovative way for each of the different schools to celebrate it.

“One thing that everyone was very much on board with was the fact that the community must be on board to give our children a quality education.”

Though this year would mark the first celebration of the Million Father March, Grayson seeks to make the event an annual one for the school system.

Each school within Butler County has chosen to celebrate the Million Father March in a variety of ways.  Greenville Middle School and Georgiana will host Donuts for Dads at their respective schools beginning at 8 a.m., where school officials will serve fathers donuts to enjoy alongside their children.

W.O. Parmer will hold an indoor march at 9 a.m., where fathers will parade through the school’s halls in front of their children. Greenville Elementary will host a similar event for fathers from 8 a.m. until 8:30 a.m.

Greenville High School will host a lunch for fathers beginning at 11 a.m.

Grayson added that the event is for more than just biological fathers.

“We want any males—pastors, deacons, uncles, brothers, cousins, granddads, everything,” Grayson said.

“We want the male community as a whole to show the support.  We don’t’ care if its an uncle, a mentor or a coach.  We want male figures who are concerned about helping with their children’s education, the PTA and the whole nine yards.”

In addition, the Butler County School System will be sending a variety of photos from the event to national headquarters for a chance to compete for donations, as well as an opportunity to feature in marketing material for the Million Father March during the 2017-2018 year.

“Mrs. Bryan is more concerned with her community becoming more involved with her school system in a positive way than the competing part, but it’s always nice to be able to compete on a national level, and even be able to win something for our school system,” Grayson said. “But the most important factor for us is getting people involved—especially our fathers—into our community events and our education system.”

For more information, contact your respective school administrator or reach Grayson at 334-368-2007, 334-382-2608 ext. 2208 or Otis.grayson@butlerco.k12.al.us.