Congratulations to Jacqueline Berry, the winner of November’s Freelight giveaway item: Women Empowered by Phil Borges! Read below for her inspiring story about empowerment.
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“I was empowered when I went from a stay at home single parent, watching TV, to an elected member of the Community Education Council of School District 7. I was encouraged to run by a parent coordinator, and was surprised when I won. Once a member, I was invited to meetings, and began attending any education meeting that I could find. From every meeting I would take home written material and surf on the Internet for added information.
When I discovered I could access the school budget of my son’s school, I went to a meeting of PTA presidents, and made sure that each president knew how to access their school’s information on the Internet. Many of the presidents did not know they could do this.
My school district is designated by the NY Dept of Ed. as District In Need of Improvement. All the schools are eligible for federal Title 1 Funding because of the poverty level. Many of the principals look upon the parents as poor and uneducated, not considered as partners in student achievement and improvement of schools.
However, what a difference a title makes. When I go to a school and introduce myself as Jacqueline Berry, Community Education Council Member, the principal invites me into their office, makes coffee for me, and tells me what’s going on in their school. This has empowered me, and motivated me, to work for parents and students in my school district.”
Jacqueline Berry, Parent
Community Education Council, District 7