Education Celebrations: With 1 week until school starts, be sure you're ready

Aug. 17, 2014 at 5:36 p.m.

One week from Monday, we start the 2014-15 school year. The teachers are back to school already, and soon, the students will be joining them.

The on-campus registrations went well this year, but we know there are some families who have not yet come in to register. We strongly urge parents not to wait until the first day of school. A child should be in the classroom from the first bell and not sitting in the office waiting for paperwork to be completed. Teaching truly does begin on the first day, and we don't want your child to miss out on valuable information.

I also want to take this opportunity to remind parents to check the immunizations of their children. During registration, school nurses were on hand to look over immunization records of children and advise parents on what may be lacking. I have heard reports there were hundreds of students lacking one or more vaccinations. The students will not be allowed to attend school until they are current on all their immunizations.

The immunization reminders are not a new issue. I noticed in a recent "Years Ago" column in The Victoria Advocate that Dr. Pattie Dodson, for whom the Victoria County building located at the corner of Airline Road and Navarro Street is named, was quoted as urging parents to get their children immunized. At the time, Dodson was the director of the Victoria City-County Health Department. The article noted "that simply because diseases like polio and diphtheria are rarely seen does not mean they are completely wiped out. They can always reappear and spread, she warned."

This is how Dodson was quoted in 1989: "The idea of children not getting immunization protection is a nightmare to me," said Dodson. "With each new generation, there is always the possibility of some of these illnesses reappearing."

If the school nurse advised you your child needs immunizations before the first day of school, please take that heads-up seriously and get those immunizations. If you are unsure of what immunizations are needed, please call the school or your family physician. Immunization information is also available on the VISD website. Click on "Back to School" for information.

With only one week to go, it is also a great time to start easing back into the school schedule. This means getting the little ones off to bed a little earlier and waking them at a time closer to when they need to get up for school. This will help when the first day comes along.

We are all excited about the start of the new year. It's almost the same feeling you get as Jan. 1 approaches. There are so many opportunities ahead. This will be a great year, and we look forward to continuing to build relationships with our students, their families and the community as we work to provide the absolute best education possible for every child.

Diane Boyett is the communications director for Victoria school district. Contact her at



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