Just a quick update on our efforts so far this summer: Our team has been very busy throughout California and around the country training educators on how to do relationship building home visits.
In California we trained Pittsburg High School in the bay area and held a phone conference with LAUSD California educators, union and community colleagues in May 2011 to explore and plan for PTHVP to be piloted at Belmont HS and perhaps some other locations. Things appear to be moving forward and we expect a fall launch. The expansion into LAUSD is obviously very exciting given the size and scope of possibilities! In Sacramento City Unified School District we had over 50 K-12 schools apply for home visit funding and in June we launched our preschool into kindergarten transitional home visits, as well as the 9th grade transitional home visits.
Across the country our team conducted a “Train the Trainers” session in both Anchorage, Alaska and Denver, Colorado. “Train the Trainers” is an eight hour interactive training session led by experienced home visiting trainers and is designed to fully prepare selected parents and teachers to become regional trainers for other colleagues and school community members who would like to launch home visit efforts in their areas using this proven model.
We also traveled to St. Paul, Minnesota where we trained over 20 teachers. St. Paul has become a big focus for support from our AFT colleagues. Their interests in home visits have rapidly increased over the past year. The PTHVP team is heading back to MN in August to complete the trainings for interested educators at several sites. The PTHVP also conducted a week's worth of trainings at several Montana communities in June, including a new pre k-12 effort in schools throughout the state. We also connected with the communities that have launched in the past year via a panel of educators and parents who provided ground level expertise on successes and challenges as the model is adapted in their local community. This session was very positive and productive and will help us continue to shape our expansion into rural communities. We will be returning to Montana in August to work with several SIG sites that serve primarily Native American students. For some press on our work see: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/education/article_bf29493e-9c8e-11e0-82e7-001cc4c03286.htmlArlington, Virginia and Washington DC- the interest in Washington DC schools is nothing short of astounding from the early childhood to high school levels! We've trained educators at five sites within the district and have been invited back in August for several additional training sessions. We also trained a group of educators at a high school in Arlington, Virginia.
Thanks for your support!
I wanted to share with you a great story that one of our families shared with us. Sarah’s story is an excellent example of the power of a relationship building home visit.
My name is Sarah Gebre. I am from Ethiopia. I have lived in Denver, Colorado for the past 6 years. I am married and have four children. All of our kids attend the same elementary school in Denver. Here is my experience with the Parent Teacher Home Visit Project.
The first time the teachers called me to do the parent teacher home visit it seemed a little bit uncomfortable to me and I asked my husband why they would want to come to our home. I thought maybe they wanted to see how we take care of our kids and then say our son would be unable to attend the school. I next called one of my friends and asked her about home visits and she told me to keep my house clean and to take the TV out of my kid’s bedrooms because teachers didn’t like televisions in kid’s bedrooms!
On the day of the home visit when the teachers came to my house, it was a totally different story. During the visit we discussed how my son will be successful in his education and they asked me to be their partner in helping with my son’s education. They invited me to participate in the multicultural festival and they told me I was welcome to contact them anytime I had a question.
After the home visit I felt very respected and comfortable. I started to participate in my child’s school. I felt more comfortable talking to the teachers and asking them questions about my son. The home visit project is a very helpful project for people like me who are new to the United States. It has worked very well for me and I’m sure it would work well for other families too. The home visit project is a great bridge to connect families and schools. It is a wonderful program to help our kids be successful in school and in our future.
Thanks to your generous contribution we have been very busy training teachers across the United States. In April 2011, we:
The month of May promises to be busy as well. Here is what we have on the calendar so far:
In closing, I want to leave you with a recent article on The Parent Teacher Home Visit Project featured in The Sacramento Bee. The article does a nice job providing you our donor with a little more insight into our local work. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/04/23/3573235/teachers-visits-to-students-homes.html#storylink=misearch
Again, thanks for your generous support!
Lisa Levasseur and The Parent Teacher Home Visit Project
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local project director/teacher