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Good ideas come from Education Forum

Different sectors of the Lake Almanor Basin community represented at the inaugural meeting of the Almanor Basin Community Consortium (ABCC) in November continue to assess the needs they originally identified and determine how those needs can best be fulfilled.

The nonprofit sector met Feb. 5, the hospitality sector met Feb. 12, and most recently the education sector came together Feb. 25 in the Chester High library.

Representatives from local support organizations, community leaders, educators and parents were invited to share ideas regarding everything from dealing with the socio-emotional needs of the students to expanding and growing more parental involvement.

Students of any age have growing minds and it’s important to engage them with information, ides and activities that challenge that growth.

Parent Communication

Some of the ideas for better communication could include a newsletter specifically highlighting parent involved events; a survey identifying what parents want to be involved with, but don’t know how; and using schools for community meetings and after school parent classes (math, computer, partnerships).

Other suggestions included partnering with community organizations, recruiting help from alumni for big events and senior projects, and better communication to parents through social media, school websites and the newspaper.

Chester Elementary School currently has a column called From the Principal’s Desk about upcoming events.

Social-emotional needs

Social and emotional learning is the process through which children and adults learn to understand their emotions and through experience and expression they can manage those emotions.

This learning makes it much easier to set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make more responsible decisions.

The adult factor is included in this equation because history indicates that a majority of children are mirror images of their parent’s emotional and societal expressions.

Possible ideas for expanding more positive student interaction included partnering with CHS students as mentors for elementary age students, introducing community youth programs through the schools, more reading programs in CES, and using “restorative justice” protocols when dealing with unruly students.

It was suggested that Big Brothers/Big Sisters be looked into for the area along with better coordination with county and local mental health services and resources.

Youth organizations like the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts provide outdoors and life skills, but also citizenship and personal values that will help build peer relationships.

The ABCC invites every interested resident to join the community at the second general session that will be held April 16 at the Almanor Recreation Center on Meadowbrook Loop.

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