Dozens of people attended the Rockwood "Meet Me in St. Louis" picnic Tuesday evening in Forest Park. The event provides an opportunity for Rockwood students in the VICC (Voluntary Interdistrict Choice Corporation) transfer program to meet or reconnect with their teachers and administrators.
"We want to welcome our students and families to another school year," said Rockwood Superintendent Dr. Mark Miles. "I want each of our Rockwood students to know that I am an advocate for them. I hope our students who are St. Louis city residents leave feeling connected to our staff members and each other."
Students from ten Rockwood high or middle schools attended with their families. Rockwood Summit High and South Middle host their own, similar event in September.
"'Meet Me in St. Louis' is a welcome back event," said Rockwood Coordinator Education Equity and Diversity Brittany Hogan. "Our city families normally come out the county. This is a time when we can come to them."
Administrators gave away book bags, hot dogs, chips and Kona Ice.
"We are excited about our incoming freshmen and middle schoolers coming back to our buildings," said Hogan.
"It's a nice event," said Torina Lewis, a St. Louis resident whose children attend Rockwood schools. "I was happy to meet my son's counselor, his principal and his teacher."
"It's great, because you see the kids that went from elementary to middle to high school," said Andrea Lockwood, principal at Babler Elementary. "Many teachers come. It's a great night. The parents are thrilled when I call to make sure they're coming. We want them to connect with the Rockwood sense of community. We're a family, and all of our students need to know that."
"My son, Robert, goes to Selvidge Middle and he'll be an eighth-grader this year," said Wilbert Williams, a Rockwood parent. "His older brother went there, and he's now at Marquette. We have three more children who will follow in their footsteps."
Williams said the Meet Me in St. Louis event is beneficial.
"We catch up with some old faces and meet some new people," he said.