Earlier this summer, Deana Parsick, Ava R-I School Board member, wrote a special letter to First Lady Melania Trump inviting her to visit Ava, Mo. In her letter, Parsick expressed concerns about Missouri being ranked No. 3 in the nation on bullying, and Parsick also acknowledged bullying is a problem in Ava schools. She asked Mrs. Trump to come to our community, with the hope a visit would bring awareness to the bullying issue, and also impart a positive message to students, parents and residents. As part of her platform, the First Lady has organized the BE BEST initiative which focuses on several major issues facing children today. The initiative encourages children to Be Best in everything they do, and it also educates youths about bullying and opioid use.