Written by | SAVANNAH TARBET |
Amarillo Mayor Paul Harpole announced Jill Goodrich, executive director of Opportunity School in Amarillo, as his Friend of the Year during a breakfast April 28 in the Oak Room of the College Union Building on the Washington Street Campus.
“Each year there is a national Young Child Week, and in honor of that we have been doing the Mayor’s Breakfast for Young Children since 1999,” said Mary Claire Munger, chairwoman of the Amarillo College child development department.
The mayor, in partnership with AC and other professional groups, chooses one person to honor each year and invites others who participate in children’s education to celebrate. Opportunity School provides part-day preschool and full-day learning to 80 children with bus transportation to low-income neighborhoods and space for 16 students to receive full-day care.
“One thing Jill discussed is the ‘No Excuses’ policy, meaning nothing should stop children from reaching their full potential,” Munger said.
“The Opportunity School is the first in the United States to practice the ‘No Excuses’ policy at a day care and pre-kindergarten level.”
Some day cares and pre-kindergarten classes have problems with overcrowding, resulting in some children lacking access to resources they need. The Opportunity School keeps classes small to accommodate each child’s needs.
“Amarillo College is the first public school that follows the ‘No Excuses’ policy, so we are proud to be honoring Jill, who follows the same policy,” Munger said.