Hundreds of Rialto Unified School District parents and guardians came together at Carter High School to attend the 10th annual Parent Summit, an event that underscores and celebrates parental engagement and participation in students’ academic journey.
“I try to be involved with my kids’ schooling,” said Rosie Galvez, whose children attend Werner Elementary, Rialto Middle School and Eisenhower High. “This is just one of the ways to get involved, for my kids to see that I care about their education, and that I’m interested in what they do.”
This year’s keynote speakers were brothers Daniel and David Diaz, famed for inspiring the Walt Disney movie McFarland USA. In David’s speech to the hundreds of audience members that filled the gymnasium, he emphasized the right attitude is key to student academic success. David identified three components that must work in concert for successful education: student, parent/guardian and the school.
According to RUSD Superintendent Dr. Cuauhtémoc Avila the message of the Summit has morphed over the years to become more focused on parents/guardians in providing the tools and resources that will support and enable them to be more effective parent leaders in education.
“The keynotes, tools, information and the resources we provide will make a difference in taking the next step in helping their child become more successful,” Avila explained. “They come away from the Summit with something tangible.”
Workshops, presented in both English and Spanish, ranged from college preparedness, positive behavior and school safety, how to remain engaged in a child’s education, literacy and the basics of special education.
“We take a multi-prong approach to keep parents engaged,” concluded RUSD Board of Education Member Dina Walker.
The Parent Summit was created in 2009 by a group of involved parents led by the late Curtis T. Winton, a Rialto parent and grandparent.
The district’s Parent Center is named after Winton, who believed that parents are the first motivating factor in their children’s lives, playing a major role in their future successes. Other founding members include Corrine Winton, Monica Del Rio, Rhonda McIver-Jackson, Elizabeth Moreno, Rosa Fuentes, Rafael Chavarria, and Jackie Urbita.