Overcoming the challenges: Hundreds of students get ready for the school year

Overcoming the challenges: Hundreds of students get ready for the school year
Photo provided by staff.

POSTED: Saturday, July 26, 2014 - 11:11am

UPDATED: Saturday, July 26, 2014 - 11:11am

School is right around the corner for tons of kids in our area, and it's smart to be prepared. That's why hundreds of students, parents, and educators gathered at the River Center in Baton Rouge Saturday.

Orielle Washington has two kids, and she knows the importance of education.

"Because I think education is the key to the future," Washington said.

Washington also said there are a lot of challenges kids face today that can get in the way of that.

"Peer pressure and disobedience," Washington explained.

That's why Washington and hundreds of other parents want to learn what they can do to help keep their kids stay on track.

"Just a bit of education on how to keep them encouraged," Washington said.

"That's so important in today's world because our kids need to have at least a two-year or four-year education in order for them to get a high-wage, high-demand job," said Louisiana State Representative Patricia Smith.

Representative Smith and Metro Councilwoman Tara Wicker wanted parents to have the resources they need, and for kids to get the push they need to start the school year off right. They call is "Gliding into a New Step."

"It's a fun-filled and a power-packed day of information culminating with kids being able to have the tools they need to get back to school," Smith explained.

So officials from local universities like LSU and Southern came out to help with that.

Smith said it's important to educate the parents and students about all of the issues going on in our community, from Common Core to things happening at home.

"Making sure that they've learned something over the summer, and also that they don't bring neighborhood problems to school with them on the first day. All of those things are so very important," Smith said. "They're going to hear about all of that today, like bullying, gun safety, all the things that I think are necessary for our kids to understand that education is the key to everything they want to do in life."

Smith said this is their 7th year holding the free event.

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