Most parents want their children to do well, but may not know how to help them. Supporting a child's school and teachers is a good first step. Political matters aside (attendance at school board meetings is another editorial), every parent should make an effort to know his or her child's teachers, find out what homework they assign and take part in activities at the school.

Children recognize what matters to their parents and take on the same attitudes in the long run, so seeing mom or dad's concern with what goes on at school can contribute to a student's success. Reading to them at home, both before they reach school age and after, is another way to ensure a good school experience. And don't forget the basics such as having them get enough sleep, eat breakfast and get enough exercise.

Teachers and administrators have a hard job, but parents can help make it easier in many ways. Even parents who work can join parent associations, send snacks for special occasions and take an interest in homework.

All of the Tift County primary schools -- Annie Belle Clark, G.O. Bailey, Len Lastinger, Northside and Omega -- held "Meet the Teacher Night" last night. Other area schools hosted similar events earlier in the week.

Even if you couldn't make it to the open house, you can still take part in the life of the school by communicating with teachers and encouraging good study habits.

Your child, your family and our community will reap the benefits.

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