Sending our children off to their first years of school is a big step. Whether it's preschool or Kindergarten, we can hardly bear to watch them take those small steps into the classroom, and see the door shut behind them as we stand on the other side. Little do we know that as soon as that door shuts, we can expect to receive an email from the school asking us to volunteer for some sort of event, project or committee. And devoted parents that we are, many of us promptly say "yes."
Not so fast! Before you turn over all of your hard-earned free time to a volunteer project, it's important to ask the right questions. While we readily acknowledge that parent volunteering is hugely important to the success of schools, and makes a big difference to our children and to the community, it's also true that some parents over-commit themselves to an extent that can be detrimental to family life. What is the balance between helping your child's school and taking care of yourself? At what point does the satisfaction of contributing to the school tip over into exhaustion from having taken on too much?
To avoid frustration down the road, and to maximize the real joys of being involved in your child's school, be sure to ask at least some of these questions before volunteering for a school project.
Hooray for all of the wonderful parent volunteers out there! Please share your wisdom in the comments.
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