PTA: Teachers only part of education equation

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Only 14 schools in the Charleston County School District have PTAs.

That's a fact District 9-Charleston County South Carolina PTA President Stan Halstead wants to change.

"That's one of the goals of District 9 PTA: to have a PTA or PRTA, which is Parent, Teacher, Student Association in every school in Charleston County," he says.

Parental involvement is just one part of the equation in order to improve schools.

"It means reading with your child, reviewing spelling words, answering phone calls from the teacher, sitting with your child and going over the work the teacher sent home," Charleston County School District Superintendent Nancy McGinley, Ph.D, says.  "If you do that as a parent, you can extend your child's learning tremendously."

McGinley unveiled a plan on Monday to teachers at four district elementary schools, which is aimed at improving student achievement.

Part-time and full-time teachers at Burns Elementary, North Charleston Elementary, Memminger Elementary and Sanders-Clyde Elementary all must re-apply for their positions.  In doing so, they agree to work an additional 20 paid days throughout the year.

"It's an absolute deliberate culture shift," McGinley says.  "We want to say, 'we invite you back -- if you are committed to being here and doing things differently'."

Current contracted teachers who do not reapply, or who are not selected, will be moved to other schools within the district.

"The 210-day contract will enable us to have more training time, more team-building time, more developmental time with our faculties in schools that have had academic challenges," McGinley says.

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