ABOUT JOANNE

View Joanne Shum’s Resume

Retired Teacher:

I am well qualified to represent 11129761_10206332428653561_1987028796678656432_nDistrict 5 on the Alabama State School Board. I retired from Montgomery Public Schools as an Education Specialist, and my twenty plus years teaching in elementary school were very happy ones. My classrooms were student centered, and I worked hard to make my classroom a safe and happy place to be. I wanted my students to enjoy school and look forward to being there, and they did! Learning takes place when students feel safe, appreciated, and motivated to do their personal best.

Active in PTA for 41 Years:

I believe strongly in parent involvement, and I have volunteered in PTA since my first born began school. When my children were small, the schools were not air conditioned. PTA’s raised the money to air condition schools, and that was a big but important endeavor. My kids and I have sold a lot of candy, gift wrap, etc. to help schools provide what students need. I worked hard with other PTA members to get kindergarten established in Alabama. Getting that accomplished was a proud moment!

When I was president of Floyd PTA in 1977, I was horrified to learn that magazines such as Hustler and Penthouse were out on open racks on newsstands and in bookstores. Children could see the graphic covers and leaf through the contents if a parent wasn’t right there to prevent it. I led a grass roots effort to stop this practice, and legislation was passed that required pornographic magazines to have brown covers on the front to cover revealing photos. These magazines were also required to be kept where children could not get to them.  It was “The Minors Display Law”.

I have served as President of Floyd PTA, V.P. of Lanier and Jeff Davis, President of Montgomery Council of PTA’s twice, and Secretary of the Alabama PTA, etc. Last year I served as the Reflections Chair for Johnny Carr PTSA. Parent Involvement makes a big difference in quality education.

Supporter of  HIPPY (Home Instruction for Parents of Pre-School Youngsters)

80% of a what a child learns is learned before the age of 5; therefore, it is crucial that children living in under served areas are given the opportunity to receive pre-school education. HIPPY is an amazing program that works with parents and helps them get their pre-schoolers ready for success in Kindergarten. It provides parents with the materials they need to ensure their children are able to master the necessary school readiness skills.

I helped bring the very first HIPPY program to Alabama and served as the very first HIPPY Coordinator! I was chosen as the Outstanding Coordinator while under the Montgomery program.

When I retired from Montgomery Public Schools, I established the Alabama HIPPY State office and operated as the State Director for ten years. During that time, HIPPY programs grew from 3 to 33, and reached 2,000 Alabama families. We check in on HIPPY families to see how are HIPPY kids are doing. Studies show that HIPPY graduates have gone on to college and are leading successful lives. Parents love HIPPY because it works, and that’s why I’m highly invested and proud to be a part of this effective program.

Watch this video to learn more about HIPPY:

Raising Two Grandsons who are in Public School:

1917444_1295919235692_3697466_nMy children attended public school, and four grandsons are now in public school. One is in elementary school, two in middle school, and one in high school. My husband and I are raising two of our grandsons, and our evenings are spent through the school year helping with homework, projects, and studying for tests. I know what is going on because I am a public school “parent”! I know how difficult some of the new math is because I am trying to understand the new ways of working problems—that has been a challenge!

If elected, I will be one of the few school board members raising children in public schools.  That makes me uniquely qualified to understand the challenges facing public education today.

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