meet emme smith
founder and creator of the parent pal movement.
My story began in 2010 when at the age of five, my son was diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). After working for human services for a number of years, I was completely anti-medication and anti-diagnosis. My experience with both up until that time had not been positive. I held the belief that both medication and diagnoses were over utilized to the point of abuse for children under the age of six.
So there I sat, faced with a huge dilemma. My son — a bright, energetic, innocent, and amazing five-year-old — was struggling with basic classroom behavior and completing classwork. All I wanted was for my baby to be the absolute best he could be. So after much deliberation and tears, I decided to give the medication a try. It was the absolute best thing for both of us! And thus began my journey of advocacy and involvement.
This story is a mere glimpse into the many highs and lows of my journey as a parent and advocate; from struggling with the decision to medicate my son to now being a high school counselor.
I know from experience that raising a child and being an involved parent can be all too overwhelming at times. Add attention deficiency, hyperactivity, impulsivity, and lack of perseverance to the basic equation and academic success seems virtually impossible. As I said, I’ve been there, and so my unique vantage point allows me to see both sides of the coin and affords me an empathetic understanding of the challenges involved.
As an advocate for student success, it is my life goal to start a national movement that empowers parents to awaken their inner superhero through advocacy. My dedication to this movement is rooted in the words of the late Dr, Rita Pierson, “Every child deserves a champion: an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists they become the best they can possibly be.”
As an author of tutorials, courses, and articles that help parents feel secure and empowered, I am humbled in knowing that my expertise comes from the day to day highs and lows with my own son.
In my upcoming book, The ABCs of IEPs, I am transparent and walk you through my most vulnerable moments in the IEP process.
My story is your story and I get it! I want to connect with you to share your struggles and your celebrations. As a result of their work with me, parents are transformed and inspired to have an active voice and definitive role in their child’s academic success. I challenge you to have a seat at the table. I wholeheartedly believe that we have the ability to use our superpowers to impact the world, one child at a time.
Superhero parents unite!
“Learning disabilities are simply super powers waiting to be developed.”