Texas Tech University

Experts Can Discuss Parent-Teacher Interactions, Kids' Anxiety, More

Glenys Young

August 1, 2019

Specialists on a wide variety of topics are available for back-to-school interviews.

Back-to-school time is here again! As students and teachers prepare to begin a new year, parents are preparing for a new routine and new challenges. Whether parents are sending their child off to school for the first time or the last, Texas Tech University experts are available to share their knowledge and help ease the transition.


Back-to-School ShoppingRobert Paul Jones, associate professor and chair of the Department of Hospitality & Retail Management, (806) 834-8922 or robert.p.jones@ttu.edu

• Jones, who has worked in retail leadership and consulting for more than 25 years, is available to discuss what parents should expect from the back-to-school shopping experience and provide some recommendations to make the process easier.

Children's ActivityMelanie Hart, vice provost for eLearning & Academic Partnerships and a professor in the Department of Kinesiology & Sport Management, (806) 742-2184 or melanie.hart@ttu.edu

• Hart is available to discuss the importance of keeping kids active outside of school, especially once they're back in the classroom and having to sit still for much longer periods than they did during the summer.

Children's Anxiety – Lauren Pascarella, a clinical psychology doctoral candidate in the Department of Psychological Sciences, (806) 834-2995 or lauren.pascarella@ttu.edu

• Pascarella is available to discuss children's depression and anxiety. While most kids are excited about going back to school, and perhaps a little nervous, how can parents tell if their child isn't just nervous – that there's something really wrong? And what should they do about it? 

Children with ASD – Christy Chapman, a school psychologist and board certified behavior analyst for the Mobile Outreach Clinic for Autism, a program through the Burkhart Center for Autism Education & Research, (806) 834-2491 or christy.chapman@ttu.edu

• Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) face many of the same challenges as other children when they go back to school each fall, but they also face their own unique set of circumstances. Chapman is available to discuss how families of kids with ASD can help facilitate their transition back into the classroom.

College Students with ASDRachel Harmon, learning specialist in the Connections for Academic Success and Employment program through the Burkhart Center for Autism Education & Research, (806) 834-3929 or rachel.harmon@ttu.edu

• Harmon can discuss the special challenges for students with ASD as they head off to college, and what can help them be successful.

Financing the FutureVickie Hampton, a certified financial planner, professor and chair of the Department of Personal Financial Planning, (806) 834-1824 or vickie.hampton@ttu.edu

• The annual return to school may be the perfect opportunity for parents to begin thinking about how they will pay for their children's future educational endeavors. Hampton is available to discuss what parents can do now to make sure they are in the best position for their children's future expenses. She can speak on the cost of higher education and methods of paying for college, including long-term savings, 529 plans, student loans and other options.

NutritionAllison Childress, assistant professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences, director of the online master's program in nutrition and dietetics, and chief clinical dietitian for the Nutrition & Metabolic Health Initiative, (806) 834-6371 or allison.childress@ttu.edu

• Childress is available to discuss healthy lunches and after-school snacks for children that can keep their brains functioning optimally, as well as what kinds of foods can give them that dreaded afternoon energy slump. She can suggest some snacks that are both healthy and fun enough for picky kids to accept.

Online EducationJustin Louder, associate vice provost for eLearning & Academic Partnerships and an assistant professor of practice in the College of Education, (806) 834-1740 or justin.louder@ttu.edu

• Louder is available to discuss how students who go to school exclusively online can best prepare for the upcoming school year.

Parent-Teacher InteractionsMitzi Ziegner, associate chair of the Department of Human Development and Family Studies and director of the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance Early Childhood Online Program, (806) 834-4019 or mitzi.ziegner@ttu.edu

• Ziegner, a former Texas public school teacher, is available to discuss what parents can do to help their kids get off on the right foot as a new school year begins. She can address the importance of family involvement and how it is linked to student success, and what children, caregivers and teachers can do to help foster positive relationships. What routines can families establish at home to reinforce and solidify content area learning as well as key social and emotional development?