Meyer Memorial Trust Has Awarded SKCE a 2-year Grant

Meyer Memorial Trust has awarded SKCE with a 2-year grant to advance equitable education. Our gratitude goes out to MMT for being such an incredibly strong supporting organization for our programs and civic activities!

MMT started their new Equitable Education Portfolio about 10 months ago, and they have offered grants to organizations across Oregon totaling $7.2 million over 3 years.

MMT’s vision is that all students have an opportunity to access meaningful public education. The focus of the portfolio is on Oregon students, so they can realize their academic achievement goals with disparities at all levels of  education removed.

SKCE works to remove these disparities through working with Spanish speaking parents who learn how to help their children succeed in school. We provide programming for parents of children from pre-k to 12th grade, covering parenting, literacy development, communication, school advocacy and partnership, adolescent transition and leadership development.

Our results speak for themselves; our first cohort showed a significant drop in chronic absenteeism – from a 34% to 67% reduction – for the children of our parent participants.

This $150,000 2-year operational grant will assure that SKCE can impact at least 800 families over the next two years.

Out of 167 competitive applications, SKCE was one of 49 organizations awarded a grant. Read more about the Meyer Memorial Trust Equitable Education grants for Oregon

SKCE is Awarded the Community Partner of the Month by Salem Keizer School District

At the School Board meeting on September 12th, Salem Keizer Coalition for Equality was recognized for our partnership with the district. We were nominated by Four Corners Elementary staff, a school we have worked with for eight years. The award announcement for SKCE starts at video time 9:23 and ends at 12:12.

Pictured from left: Four Corners Elementary Principal Phil Decker, Instructional Assistant
Rosa Garcia, SKCE representatives: Lucia Sanchez Caballero, Yadira Juarez and Javier
Quiroz, with Board Chair Paul Kyllo. Photo courtesy of SKSD.

As the Salem Keizer School District said in its Spotlight on Success post, we were nominated by the Four Corners School staff. We’ve worked with Phil Decker, Rosa Garcia and many other Four Corners staff members for years, and enjoy their enthusiasm and support.

Excerpts from the award presentation

“The Coalition has worked district-wide to support our non-English speaking community. Last November, they sponsored an appreciation dinner and cultural night for the district’s bilingual teachers. Over 150 teachers and family members attended the event held at Stephens Middle School.”

“For two months this past summer, the Coalition co-partnered with the school district to put on the District’s first Summer Language and Culture Institute. Hosted at the Coalition’s offices, it consisted of 15 days of activities, events, field trips and guest speakers, to expose Salem-Keizer Schools staff to the local Hispanic culture in our community.”

The written text for the award presentation is in the Spotlight for Success post above (we are the second group awarded on that page).

Thank you to the Salem Keizer School District for the recognition!

Moms, Dads, Help Prepare Their Children for Kindergarten

Aprendiendo Avanzamos (Learning Together We Advance) delighted families twice a week for 13 weeks from April to June with the help of generous supporters. Moms, dads and kids had so much fun learning together through developmental activities that they asked for more classes!

    

SKCE early learning facilitators led children and parents through a variety of experiences twice a week – singing, art projects, learning games, sensory experiences through play, and literacy development. Parents attended parenting classes one day each week and parent-led preschool the other day. Families attended from 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM and received a hearty breakfast and snack. Babies and toddlers received developmentally focused childcare.

By the end of the course, 24 parents had been through a 10-week parenting program called Abriendo Puertas (Opening Doors) on Thursday mornings, while their children received learning-rich preschool. On Friday mornings, parents learned how to make low cost learning activities at home, and then practiced those activities with their child in this second day of preschool each week. Finally, parents attended three trainings of the “Ready! For Kindergarten” program. Each family received and learned to use a $200 “Ready! For Kindergarten” kit of developmental education materials and activities, generously provided by the Marion Polk Early Learning Hub.

 

The impact of Aprendiendo Avanzamos can affect generations.

             

Spanish speaking immigrants from rural areas in Mexico with farm working backgrounds are less likely to have had access to school in their childhood. They tell us of having no books in the home, going to school sporadically as rural teachers sent by the government came and went, and having immediate family needs that often took priority over building the future. The simple act of learning how to provide educational experiences to their children and getting them ready for kindergarten changes the way parents think about the future of their child and family. Parents embrace their role as first teacher, mentor and coach of their children. A domino effect occurs throughout the child’s school career as parents continue to stay involved, learn to advocate for their children, and envision high school graduation, college and/or career accomplishments and improving the family’s income. Thus old cycles of poverty and low literacy are set aside as the new cycle has begun, and is passed down in parenting the next generation.

 

Other supporters that made this session of Aprendiendo Avanzamos possible are:

the Oregon Parenting Education Collaborative, William S. Walton Charitable Trust, Oregon Community Foundation, and the Atkinson Graduate School of Management (AGSM) Grants Program.

Annalivia and Angel testify before the Salem Keizer School Board

Annalivia Palazzo-Angulo, the SKCE Executive Director, and Angel Reyes, one of the SKCE Educa Inspira Facilitators both testified at the Salem-Keizer School Board meeting on May 23rd, 2017.  Annalivia’s testimony is from 3:32 minutes until 7:54 minutes and her testimony discusses both the school district working within poor state school funding and the importance of maintaining diversity in both hiring and school programs. Angel’s testimony is from 7:54 minutes to 11:35 minutes, and he testifies about the importance of speaking and learning Spanish. Angel’s testimony is in Spanish, with an English translation.