Over the course of the sixty-minute seminar, parents had the chance to share personal concerns about their students with the 97 other parents who attended the free discussion. A worried mother expressed her disappointment regarding her son’s usage of headphones to listen to music while doing homework–– which in her opinion was an extremely ineffective study habit. A concerned father wondered when his children would show him some respect and maybe even say “I love you dad” once in awhile.
“[Parents] work all day and then they find time to come to these seminars,” Prinz said. “To me it shows that they are really interested in improving things at home.”
According to PTSA Chair of Parent Education Committee Kathleen McCulloch, the support system that the parent seminar offers reassures parents that they aren’t alone in tackling certain problems.
“Knowing that there are other people feeling the same way as you do has a very calming effect,” she said. “You realize that there is this common community and that [many] people are dealing with [such] issues.”
PTSA also promotes student involvement in on and off campus events that strive to alleviate the stress and hardships that students undergo. According to Prinz, participating in activities such as Challenge Day, meditation and parenting seminars proves to be beneficial for students as they are exposed to their parents’ perspectives on issues.
“Students go home and appreciate their parents so much more because they see how hard it is,” he said. “They see the struggles that parents go through [everyday].”
With the success of the first parent seminar, PTSA vice president of membership Prashant Kanhere hopes to continue publicizing future meetings and parenting classes to encourage more parents and students to take advantage of Prinz’s and other guest speakers’ expertise in the area of student-parent relationships.
“At the end of the day, it turns out that all parents want their children to be successful in life, well-balanced, academically [sound], and good people in general,” Kanhere said.