DISD Superintendent Mike Miles frequently talks about “feeder pattern identity,” the idea that elementary school students and their parents should take pride in their neighborhood high school, and vice versa.
North Dallas resident Louisa Meyer has an idea for how to strengthen those identities. But it’s going to take some money.
Meyer wants to borrow an idea from Highland Park ISD, where there is a tradition on the first day of school: For at least 25 years, high school seniors have given out T-shirts to kindergartners that identify them as members of the class that will graduate in 13 years. Last August, students at the district’s four elementaries received “HP Class of 2025” shirts.
“Obviously, I want to start with the W.T. White feeder pattern,” said Meyer, whose two sons attended Nathan Adams Elementary and Marsh Middle School before graduating from W.T. White. “But my dream is to have kindergartners at Barbara Jordan Elementary get South Oak Cliff shirts and to have kids at Adele Turner Elementary get Carter shirts.”
To achieve her dream, Meyer’s going to need sponsors, and a lot of them. DISD is expecting 13,535 kindergartners for the 2013-14 school year. That’s why she shared the idea last Friday during the North Dallas Chamber of Commerce’s annual Education Forum, where Miles was the keynote speaker. Meyer appealed to the business owners in the room to help pay for such shirts in exchange for a logo on each one.
“Think about a Turkey Trot shirt and all the sponsors on the back,” she said.
Highland Park ISD’s shirts are not sponsored, spokesman David Hicks said; the district pays for them.
If you’d like to get involved with DISD’s T-shirt effort, you can reach out to Meyer, who just finished a term as chair of the district’s Citizens Budget Review Commission, via email at email@example.com.