Parent conference held at the Faculty

April 20, 2010

London Distrct Catholic School Board Western Education Thames Valley School Board

A ground-breaking conference for parents, From Rhetoric to Reality: How Engaged Parents Close the Achievement Gap for Students, to be held at the Faculty of Education on Saturday, April 24, will shed light on tough issues facing moms, dads and educators today.

The conference, offered free of charge, is an example of the unique, collaborative partnership of the local public and Catholic parent involvement committees. Media violence expert Professor Peter Jaffe from the University of Western Ontario's Faculty of Education will explore the latest research on violence in movies, music, TV and video games and discuss the real effect it?s having on your children.

"We'll offer some practical strategies parents can use to reduce exposure to media violence as well as minimize the harmful effects," said Jaffe who is also a veteran Thames Valley District School Board Trustee and former Board Chair. He will be joined by Katie Cole of Medway High School and Ray Hughes a former TVDSB Safe Schools coordinator who are both well known for their expertise in this area. "We want to provide parents with 'take-away tools' to implement at home and in their local communities, so they can contribute to the success and well-being of their children," said Arlene Morell, Chair of the Thames Valley Parent Involvement Committee.

"Engaged parents, as partners within the education system, can contribute directly to student success, safety, health, and happiness," added Linda Steel, chair of the London District Catholic Parent Involvement Committee. The valuable supportive partnership between these parent organizations, Boards,and community agencies is unique in Ontario, said Steel and Morell, whose keynote address will examine their grassroots successes as partners in education within their school systems, with each other, and within the community.