YOU SAID IT
“ The parents are the ones in the end who are the most influential in helping a child succeed.”
MAIN-A-DIEU — A Cape Breton native with a career in education has returned home to pass on the benefits of her life experiences to the community she left long ago.
Pauline Mesher volunteers each Wednesday and Thursday with the learning support program at the Coastal Discovery Community Centre in Main-aDieu.
The free program is focused on helping families develop strategies to support their children’s learning experience from home.
“ The message for parents and families is they are the important ones,” said the former social worker, teacher and principal who has returned to Cape Breton after 30 years away.
“ The school will always do the best they can with the resources they have, but when the child doesn’t have enough support at home to reinforce that, it is pretty hard to go the long road.”
A good work ethic is at the base of the program, as is taking a child to the library and showing a passion for reading at home.
However, what Mesher offers should not be confused with tutoring.
“As soon as you mention tutoring, you are off the hook as a family. Somebody else is doing it. The parents are the ones in the end who are the most influential in helping a child succeed.”
Her own family can serve as an example of the success of her efforts. Both Mesher and her youngest daughter hold PhD degrees. Her other three children are also university graduates.
“For me it is always from the perspective of the child. What will support the child? Not what makes it easier for the school system.”
The support program is part of her personal commitment to offer something of meaning to the community.
She believes in it but is struggling to get the word out.
“It’s a small place, but I do believe that the education needs of children are there. It doesn’t matter what community, it is whether or not people know about it and then access it.”
For more information on the program, email pauline. email@example.com, call 733-2883 or simply drop in each Wednesday or Thursday beginning at 6 p.m.
Pauline Mesher organizes books for the learning support program at the Coastal Discovery Community Centre in Main-a-Dieu, Monday. Mesher volunteers each Wednesday and Thursday with the free program that focuses on helping families develop strategies to support their children’s learning experience from home.