Opinion

March 16, 2013

Citizens of the Week: Community Cats volunteers

It’s no secret teachers might feel spread thin these days. Long hours, tight education budgets and larger teacher-student ratios can sometimes make education a daunting job.

But teachers are not alone. Not if the Community Cats volunteers have their way.

Several community members — including parents, high school students and college students — have formed the Community Cats program as a way to offer help to teachers during the day. The volunteers go into Dalton Public Schools classrooms weekly to read to students, help them with math problems and assist teachers in all kinds of instruction.

Mary Julian Renz, a teacher at City Park Elementary School, said having volunteers helps lower the student-teacher ratio and increase one-on-one time with each student. Diana Guzman, a student at Morris Innovative High School, is one helper.

“(Having Guzman read to students) boosted their fluency and their self-esteem,” Renz said. “She’s very self-assured and polite and respectful ... she’s just a good role model for our students.”

Guzman is one of 29 students from Morris Innovative who helps students at all elementary schools in the city.

Paige Watts, Community Cats coordinator for Morris Innovative, said high school students make the best volunteers because they can inspire a younger generation though example.

“It’s getting the students out there and getting them to feel valued,” she added.

For volunteering their time to educate elementary students and assist local teachers, The Daily Citizen names the Community Cats volunteers Citizens of the Week.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • "We’ve had a great ride"

    For 60 years, the Green Spot has been a part of Dalton. It survived long after most other locally owned grocery stores in the area had folded to competition from big chain grocery stores and to big box super stores.

    July 29, 2014

  • Charles Oliver: Traveler from a district in Columbia?

    Jim Gray was traveling out of Orlando International Airport when a Transportation Security Administration officer tried to stop him from boarding his plane.

    July 29, 2014

  • Letter: Children are not the enemy

    We recently read somewhere that our country is at war, not with another nation but with one another.

    July 29, 2014

  • Ensuring the joy of reading

    They’re little, they’re libraries, and best of all, they’re free.

    July 28, 2014

  • Move carefully, but soon

    No one intended for it to happen. No one had any bad motives.
    But during a period of 40 years or more, quite a few people didn’t do enough planning, didn’t have enough foresight to see what all of the development in Dalton would do.

    July 27, 2014

  • Local school systems must bear costs of federal immigration failure

    No word. No warning. Little help.
    That’s what Dalton Public Schools officials received from the federal government when it dropped 30 Central American students into local classrooms last school year.

    July 26, 2014

  • Sacrifices worth honoring

    Members of the Dalton City Council were recently approached by representatives of the local chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart with a request to declare Dalton a Purple Heart City. Council members indicated they will approve the request.

    July 24, 2014

  • We must do better

    The numbers tell a sad tale.
    Registered voters: 36,843.
    Cards cast: 5,307.
    That means the turnout for Tuesday’s runoffs in Whitfield County was a measly 14.4 percent, according to unofficial results from the Whitfield County elections office.

    July 23, 2014

  • Letter: Control immigration

    Thousands are starting to pour into our country, and things are getting personal. Why would we end up the bad guys if we turn away children who aren’t ours? How does it make us better people to let one man steal from our children and stand by and do nothing?

    July 23, 2014

  • Helping with Book Blast betters the community

    The school test results are in, and students in Whitfield and Murray counties mostly improved from a year ago, mirroring or exceeding average scores of their peers.

    July 23, 2014