Tri-City Ledger -

By Stephanie Cunningham
Ledger Staff 

New FES principal greets parents

Flomaton native returns to lead school and answer parents questions in 'Q& A' event


July 26, 2018

Stephanie Cunningham

Brown speaks with parents at Tuesday's event

"I have four kids at home, but between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., I have 420 kids."

Those were the words of Flomaton native and new Flomaton Elementary School Principal George Brown said at Tuesday night's parent meeting held in the school's cafeteria.

"I just want the chance to introduce myself and for you to get to know who will be taking care of your kids." Brown said as he began the meeting.

Although Brown may be new in his position, he has a long history in education and hails from a legacy of principals of FES, as his grandfather George Brown, Sr., held the position for more than 20 years.

"I'm not going to lie to ya'll, " he said, "I took a pay cut to be here, but that's how much I love Flomaton."

Brown described his goals for the upcoming year and how he plans to emphasize discipline and teaching children the value of respect.

"I want these kids to learn the value of respecting other people whether they agree with them or not," Brown said. "In today's world it is important."

Brown explained that while he has a background in special education, he believes that his firm hand at discipline will only serve to help support teachers in their efforts to control classrooms and prepare students for learning in an undisruptive environment.

"I'm going to be very visible in the school. I want the teachers to see me. I want the students to see me. I'm a servant and I want to help the teachers," he explained. "If I can help the teachers then they can better help the students."

As far as curriculum, Brown has goals of seeing that FES can improve on its state score of an overall 82 from the 2017-18 school year.

"We came in second in the county last year, and folks, if you know me, I don't like coming in second," he said.

Brown wants to improve the school's reading and science scores that are calculated from the statewide scantron tests that are administered to students during the school year.

"Let your kids know that the tests are important, but don't stress them out over it," Brown stated.

Brown cautioned that his goals for FES might not be a fast accomplishment.

"Look, I'm an Alabama football fan, and if ya'll will remember, even Nick Saban lost to Louisiana Monroe the first year he was the head football coach at Bama," he said. "It was because he was busy setting things up before he started winning championships. I might need some time to make things happen."

One of Brown's biggest concerns was about the importance of parental involvement with the school.

"Our PTO is not where it needs to be. We need parents to be involved," he said. "There is no greater benefit than to be a part of the PTO and seeing it reflected in the classrooms."

Brown encourages all parents to pay a yearly $5 fee to the PTO, which covers an entire household and become a member of the PTO.

"Great schools are great because of the involvement of parents." Brown stressed.

Another teaching tool that Brown plans to implement is the five-finger idea, a concept to help build on character skills for students.

"When my hand goes up," he said. "I want these kids to know that means 'working hard, respecting others, make good decisions, smile a lot and love on other people."

Brown also addressed concerns from attending parents over the issue of school safety.

He explained, "The first thing I did when I got here was walk the campus and look for things that might need improvement."

With the help of others all over the community Brown has already organized the striping of parking lots and is working with the school board on the countywide initiative to improve the security cameras at the school.

"One thing that we have done is put up the fence around the playground," he said. "Bad guys don't like barriers so anything that we can do to prevent them or slow them down will help keep our kids safe."

With more than 20 parents in attendance at the first meeting, Brown said that he was happy with the turnout.

"It went better than I was expecting and I was very pleased," he said. "We had a lot of parents sign up for the PTO and they can have the chance at 'Meet the Teacher Night'."

FES will host its 'Meet the Teacher Night' on Aug. 7, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on campus. Parents and students are encouraged to bring school supplies to drop off at the school that evening.

The 2018-2019 school year will begin at Flomaton schools on Wednesday, Aug. 8.

An additional opportunity to speak to Brown will be an open house event held at FES in October. A date has not yet been announced.


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