“The tougher it gets to be a kid, the tougher is gets to be a parent.”

Marshall County Assistant Superintendent Alan Garner stated these words to the Board of Education to illustrate why Marshall County Schools is taking part in The Parent Project.

The Parent Project is the nation’s “largest and most effective” program for parents dealing with children’s destructive behavior, built by thousands of parents under the leadership of Bud Fry, a Pomona City (Los Angeles County, California) police officer, according to parentproject.com. It was originally designed to address challenges of drugs, youth violence and gangs, which makes the program “uniquely equipped” to tackle anything from phone/social media addiction and Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to SnapChat bullying and sexual predators — all problems parents face today.

Cities and counties that have participated in the program have seen life-changing results. The Roseville Police Department in California saw a 73% reduction in calls-for-service from families who participated. An Idaho county performed a “communitywide intervention” to implement the program and saw a 33% reduction in petitions filed for juvenile offenses, more than 30% decline in minors on probation for any cause, a 20% reduction in drug-related probation violations, a 24% reduction in days spent by youth in detention and the school dropout rate fell from 17% to 0%.

Seeing such numbers makes Garner believe the program can help parents in Marshall County. He said it could benefit any parent whose children struggle in school due to any circumstances.

“The program is volunteer basis with parents in our community whose students attend Marshall County Schools,” Garner said. “We will offer a 10-week parenting class for them — an intensive class. It’s volunteer only, so they sign up on their own.

“We were fortunate to get a grant this year, so this program is at no cost to our parents,” Garner added.

There will be two classes available. The first class begins Sept. 10. It will be held at 5:30 p.m. at Marshall Technical School in the VICA Room. The second class begins Sept. 11 at 8:30 a.m. inside Claysville School’s lunchroom.

For more information or to sign up for a class, call 256-505-2296 or email Theparentproject@marshallk12.org.

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