By Alicia Doyle

The Writer
Specializing in Good News
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Young leaders Help for younger kids

At 11 years old, Paris Beauregard volunteers to work with younger children, organizes school events and is known as a fair individual who listens well to the concerns of others.

"Often, adults refer to her as an old soul," said Paris' mom, Roni Jordan. "One thing about Paris is that she has the ability to really listen and help people understand what their best choice will be. She helps them weigh options and look at situations from other points of view without them really even knowing that's what is happening."

For Paris, "being a good listener is really a key quality to get to know someone."

"If you are a good listener, you will always learn something, no matter who you are talking to," the girl said.

Before her school day begins at Cabrillo Middle School in Ventura, Paris can often be found at her alma mater, Lincoln Elementary School in Ventura, where she volunteers to help other children in the classroom.

"I really enjoy working with the younger kids because it makes me feel like they really look up to me," Paris said. "They always are appreciative for the help and seem to enjoy my company."

As a fifth-grader at Lincoln, she was selected as the "Principal for the Day" for being the most responsible student and led a tour for prospective teachers highlighting the merits of the school, staff and students.

"Paris is a very inspiring role model to those around her due to her dedication to her work, her family and her peers; she is always enthusiastic and eager to step up to a challenge, allowing herself to grow in the process," said Joanne Hutchins, one of Paris' teachers at Lincoln.

She also is generous and thoughtful in spirit and knows how to smile at life even when there are ups and downs, Hutchins added.

"Paris never gives anything but her best and then still a little more," she said. "She's a great problem-solver and is able to recognize that there are many different angles to look at them and their solutions."

Lee Warner, principal at Lincoln, remembers Paris for exhibiting "incredible leadership skills" and empathy for her classmates.

"She would problem-solve issues for students and make reasonable recommendations," Warner said. When she was principal for a day, "she experienced an adult's leadership role and was remarkable at organizing her day."

Paris enjoyed getting a glimpse of what it's like to be principal.

"I ordered supplies, supervised recess, observed classrooms and called the superintendent, but her office assistant thought that it was a prank call," remembered Paris, who said she wants to be an architect when she grows up. "Out of all of my tasks, I enjoyed observing the classrooms best because all of my past teachers were happy that I was principal for a day."

At Cabrillo Middle School, Paris is an outstanding student who has earned an A average since she enrolled, said Principal Glory Page. "She is also a member of our beginning band class, a group of students who does an exceptional job learning to play music," Page said.

Coming from a split family and living with a single parent who works many late nights, Paris remains self-confident, her mom said.

"When she speaks she is concise and positive," Jordan said. "She is resilient."

Paris said her greatest role model is her mom. "She always gives me advice, and she is such a great example," Paris said. "My mom taught me to keep on working at what you want no matter what."

— To nominate a Ventura County youth for the Young Leaders series, e-mail jprice@VenturaCountyStar.com.

Cabrillo student shares knowledge at her old elementary school

James Glover II / Star staff
 3/17/8 VENTURA- Roni Jordan hugs her daughter Paris Beauregard, 11, after she finishes her volunteer work at Lincoln Elementary School on March 17, 2008. Beauregard volunteers at Lincoln every morning before she heads off to Cabrillo Middle School where she is in the sixth grade.

James Glover II / Star staff 3/17/8 VENTURA- Roni Jordan hugs her daughter Paris Beauregard, 11, after she finishes her volunteer work at Lincoln Elementary School on March 17, 2008. Beauregard volunteers at Lincoln every morning before she heads off to Cabrillo Middle School where she is in the sixth grade.

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