HIPPY program graduates third class

Published 9:25 am Wednesday, May 18, 2011

HIPPY graduates wait for their names to be called during the graduation ceremony held Tuesday morning at Rachel Patterson Elementary School.|Photo by Lisa Tindell

More than 35 toddlers and preschoolers were honored Tuesday morning during graduation ceremonies held for the HIPPY Class of 2011 – the third graduation from the program.

Mary Grissett with the Friends of Education organization, which sponsors HIPPY, welcomed family and friends of graduates to the event, held at Rachel Patterson Elementary School.

“We are so proud of these students and so proud of every parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, brother and sister,” Grissett said. “The work you have done will pay dividends for your child for years to come. We thank you for your time and effort.”

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Diane Rose, director of the HIPPY educational program, was credited with being the reason HIPPY has continued in the Atmore community.

“Diane is the heart of the HIPPY program,” Grissett said. “We are fortunate to have her work with the students and teachers.”

Rose, who will begin her retirement at the end of the month; gave credit for the success of the students to the teachers and family of those who were part of the program.

“You, the family, are the reason these children will succeed in kindergarten,” Rose said. “Your child will benefit from having gone through 150 lessons when the child next to them hasn’t had any lessons.”

HIPPY, Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters, allows parents to participate in home based teaching with instructors visiting the participants’ homes once a week to teach parents how to teach their children. Parents then spend 15 to 20 minutes a day teaching their children.

The program currently has four home instructors including Carla Waldin, Teresa Nichols, Tonja Williams and Idell Perkins.