During a virtual ceremony, K-12 Public Schools Chancellor Hershel Lyons today surprised Osceola Magnet Elementary School in Indian River County with a $1,000 prize for having the highest participation in the fourth annual Dads Take Your Child to School Day. The statewide initiative, which was celebrated September 26, 2018, aims to increase the involvement of fathers and male role models in Florida schools.
“I extend my congratulations to Osceola Magnet Elementary School on having the highest Dads Take Your Child to School Day participation in the state,” said Chancellor Lyons. “This program highlights the importance a father or father figure plays in a child’s educational experience, and my hope is for all fathers and male role models to become familiar with their child’s school and staff. I know from personal experience that having a positive male role model makes a world of difference to a child.”
Osceola Magnet Elementary School took the top ranking with 70 percent of the student population represented by dads, male mentors, and male role models participating in classroom visits and coffee with the principal.
Research shows that when fathers and male role models play a more active role in a child’s education, children perform better academically, have fewer discipline problems and become more responsible adults.
Osceola Magnet Elementary School Principal Scott Simpson said, “Osceola Magnet School is excited by the recognition for all of the hard work we do, both for planning Dads Take Your Child to School Day as well as developing a culture that encourages parent participation throughout the school year. In fact, last year we logged 9,645 hours from parent and community volunteers! We are so proud of our great accomplishments, and we know that we could not be the great school that we are without our amazing parents working alongside our dedicated faculty and staff.”
Chancellor Lyons conceptualized the Dads Take Your Child to School Day idea when he was an assistant superintendent in Alachua County with the vision of fathers and father figures accompanying their child at school and learning how significant their presence is in their child’s education. He expanded the initiative when he joined the Florida Department of Education in 2015.
For more information about the program, please visit Dads Take Your Child to School Day.
To view a short video on the importance of fathers, stepfathers, grandfathers, uncles, brothers, foster fathers and other male role models in a child’s education, visit fldoe.org/videos.
For more information about the Florida Department of Education, visit fldoe.org.