Engaging Families for Student Success

Bi-City Spring Parent Leadership Conference

June 3, 2016

Chicago Spring Parent Leadership Conference

On Saturday, May 21st, parent leaders from our partner schools in the North Lawndale community participated in Turning the Page’s Spring Parent Leadership Conference in Chicago.

Parents at the conference discussed the various ways that they are leaders inside and outside the home, while learning new ways they can use their leadership skills to make changes in their community. Parents developed a Chicago PLCnetwork of peers within their school and North Lawndale community, while identifying existing sources of social capital and learning how to increase those levels in their schools and community.

The day started off with discussions on building a community and recognizing individuals’ core values– knowing your core values is one of the key components in becoming a leader. Parents were then asked to highlight their most important values and share them with other parents. Parents also discussed the art of listening, another valuable key skill in leadership building as it shows care, combats judgement, and provides empathy. At the conference, North Lawndale Community Coordinating Council members (NLCCC) Valerie Leonard and Rodney Brown spoke about how and what the council plans for the North Lawndale area. NLCCC envisions a comprehensive planning process that will lay a framework to guide future developments, diversify our economy, and develop our local residents for entrepreneurial and employment opportunities. Ms. Leonard and Mr. Brown’s presentation was followed with a discussion of how parents could start a parent group to benefit the entire community and not just their respective schools.

While parents were attending the conferenKids on busce, children and volunteer mentors went on a field trip to the Museum of Science and Industry. At the Museum of Science and Industry, students explored exhibits such as the Mirror Maze, Science Storms, Idea Factory, Farm Tech, Earth Revealed, the Baby Chick Hatchery, and You Experience.

 

 

Thoughts from our Chicago parents:

 “My connection with other parents was strengthened today by attending the Parent Leadership Conference.”

“My favorite part about attending the PLC was learning about my community, learning about the benefits of listening, and the presentation by NLCCC.”

“Being able to share and learn new information had to be my favorite part about today’s conference.”

DC Parent Leadership Conference

Turning the Page D.C.’s spring Parent Leadership Conference was held on Saturday, May 21st at the Lockridge/Bellevue Library in Ward 8. Attending parents, grandparents, and other caregivers were joined by D.C.’s Ward 8 City CouncilmembSpring 2016 TTP PL Conference 079er LaRuby May, who shared her knowledge of the direction of education in the District and in Ward 8 specifically. Parents were also informed by Councilmember May of the steps they could take to directly influence the City Council, including allocation of budget funds. Following Councilmember May’s visit, parents shared strengths of their school communities with one another and learned about “core and flex” priorities in their own lives and leadership styles.Spring 2016 TTP PL Conference 059

Next, parents created and shared hand art representing their own leadership styles, inspired by the book Beautiful Hands by Kathryn Otoshi and Bret Baumgarten. Finally, the Director of the Office of Human Rights’ Bullying Prevention Program, Suzanne Greenfield, joined the afternoon small group conversations on school climate and bullying before the entire group came together to share best practices for conflict within schools.

Thoughts from our DC parents:

“What has TTP changed about your life? It has given me insight on how to create an impression at the schools by volunteering and participating in PTA.”

“Being a parent leader means that I have the power to change my community.”

“As a parent leader, I have to take on a commitment to improve my school’s learning environment and to help foster relationships between various school partners.”

 

DC Child Mentoring

Not even the rain could stop students from across all seven of TTP’s partner schools from having a great time this past Saturday on their field trip to the National Mall.

First stop, the National Air and Space Museum. Students looked upward in amazement as their eyes were met with displays of giant airplanes and old space suits. Students and their group leaders spent the next few hours on a scavenger hunt through some of our nation’s most infamous museums, exploring everything from “How Things Fly” to the history of travel in space. The objective was to come back to the group with as much knowledge as a team as you could possibly gather.
Child Mentoring

After an exciting day on the National Mall, it was time to unwind. Students traveled to the MLK Library to partake in arts in crafts related to what they had learned that day. Many students en

joyed looking at the display air planes in the Air and Space Museum and decided to design their own air plane, while others chose to express how much the loved spending time with their group and group leader. All and all, the day was filled with lots of learning, exploration, fun and in the end, reflection.