In it for the kids
Joan Padgett is among dozens of parents, teachers, administrators and community leaders that serve on one of the site councils that are part of each school in the Lansing School District.
The site councils are state mandated advisory committees that work with school principals and administrators to foster improvements at the schools and are committed to "promoting our youth and giving them a good experience while they're there," Padgett said.
Padgett described her middle school site council as being "extremely active." The middle school site council provides such activities as the annual Fine Arts Fair, which allows students to showcase their artistic and musical talents and the Eighth Grade Celebration at the end of each school year.
This year, the council has been involved in bringing a Be the Change or Challenge Day to LMS.
Challenge Days, which were first put into the public eye after being featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show, are aimed at getting students more involved in their schools by talking about the issues that affect them.
"Watching the tape, I think it's something that will make a large difference," Padgett said.
Padgett, whose son Preston is an LMS eighth-grader, said she enjoys being able to make a difference in her son's and other children's formative years.
"As a parent, I want the school environment for my children to be the best it can be," she said. "With middle school and high school, those are tough years. If we can enable our kids to make it better : it's a great thing, and, as adults, hopefully they'll become better people later."
Padgett encouraged anyone interested in joining a site council, which serves the Elementary, Intermediate, Middle and High schools, to think about joining next year.
"I'm sure there are lots of people who would like to be actively involved in something like this, but they're not aware of it or don't know how to get involved," she said.
NAME: Joan Padgett
OCCUPATION: Human resources officer at Citizen's National Bank
FAMILY: Brad, husband; Preston, 14, son; Paige, 6, daughter
HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN LANSING, AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU HERE? "We've been here 10 years : the family business."
WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT LANSING? "It's a small community where there's not a stranger, but yet, a lot of things are accessible."
WHAT DO YOU DO FOR FUN? "Right now, my favorite thing is : to watch my children in the activities they're in."
WHAT MIGHT SURPRISE PEOPLE ABOUT YOU? "That I'm a K-State alumni, but I'm a huge KU fan."
WHAT IS THE BEST ADVICE YOU'VE EVER RECEIVED? "From my mom that was to do my very best in anything and everything that I do. Have a dream and go after it, and never let go of those dreams."
WHAT CLUBS OR ORGANIZATIONS DO YOU BELONG TO? "Lansing Middle School Site Council, Lansing Public Library Board and the Leavenworth-Lansing Women's Division of the Chamber of Commerce