Celebrating a Milestone

A spirit of celebration is in the air! Many of Our School Outreach Coordinators have taken to reaching out our graduating students by mail. Our School Outreach Coordinator Makenna Lester at Sequoyah Middle School, has been working on putting together handmade cards to send to graduating 8th graders.Since we can’t celebrate them in person, I wanted to make them feel recognized and celebrate this milestone with personalized messages from their School Outreach Coordinator,” said Makenna.

Assorted colorful graduation cards.

Another of our School Outreach Coordinators, Gina Forest, at Todd Beamer High School has been working hard on the Adopt-A-Senior Letter-Writing Campaign. Todd Beamer High School asked that each staff send a senior off with a special handwritten letter by one of their current or former teachers or staff. Each staff was asked if they could write a letter to four seniors. Gina thought that it would only be fitting to send letters to all 18 of her graduating students. In her letters she acknowledged the tough unforeseen circumstances they all had to endure with the pandemic and left them with an inspirational quote, that will hopefully propel them forward on their path.

Ink pin sitting next to black notebook with outline silhouette of graduate.

Assorted colorful graduation cards.

Cierra Gamble, our School Outreach Coordinator at Todd Beamer High School, is experiencing her first year with graduating High School students. Cierra is so proud of her students and all of the hard work it has taken, with many overcoming obstacles to get their diploma. She is working on sending out graduation cards in the mail and hopefully bring a smile to their face. Cierra said, “Since we are not in school and I don’t get to see them, I wanted to send them a small token to celebrate their huge accomplishment.”

Stack of envelopes with stamps.

Congratulations to all of Communities In Schools graduating students!

Maintaining Connections

Table filled with cards that have a picture of the beach on each. One card is open showing a handwritten note inside.

Thomas Jefferson School Outreach Coordinator, Amber Rowe Mosley, has gone old school with student communication as of late. Unable to reach several of her students during the school closure, she sent hand written notes of encouragement and support to those students and their families. Amber has been able to maintain contact with almost all of her students during the closure and has helped with academic issues and basic needs, among other things. 

Special Delivery

With many of our family’s heavily impacted throughout the closure and a strong need for food resources, our School Outreach Coordinators have been able to support our students delivering food to families in need. School Outreach Coordinator Amanda Martinson at Federal Way High School, shares stories with us about delivering food to students and their families. Amanda shares how wonderful the deliveries have been and further speaks about the great opportunity it is to have the ability to physically check in with her students in the midst of everyone staying home.

Open car trunk filled with bags and boxes of food.
Marcela with face mask on standing by stacked boxes with cloth shopping bags on top.

Our Site Coordinator Pat Perkins, at Illahee Middle School delivered a sweet surprise to her students. Pat dropped off cupcakes to students and their families with a big hello from their School Outreach Coordinator. Throughout her cupcake drop off extravaganza, Pat found that many parents and guardians were just as excited as her students to see Communities In Schools staff.

School Outreach Coordinator Amanda, standing by open car trunk holding up cloth shopping bags.

Another of our Outreach coordinators Shana Ludwig, at Decatur High School, tells stories of food drop offs always bringing a smile. Shana said “seeing them smile makes it worth putting on a mask and gloves just to be around my students, even if only for a moment delivering the food that they need”.

Marcela Arreolla, our Outreach Coordinator at Highline High School has been supporting families by signing them up for World Vision food distribution. Marcela has been going that extra mile for families that do not have transportation by dropping off the food kits at their homes. On Friday’s she is additionally joining community partner, Lake Burien Presbyterian Church, and helping out with food distribution. “In these uncertain times it’s important to continue to show up for our students and their families”, Marcela said.

Student holding box of cupcakes at front door.

Scholar Voice Collaborative

Screenshot of video call with students.

Our School Outreach Coordinator, Alicia Vasey-Neilson at Sequoyah Middle School, has been working hard to continue their Scholar Voice Collaborative group during the shutdown. The group has been working to develop a project that they hope to present to school administration over Zoom. Alicia is very proud of her student’s commitment to Scholar Voice Collaborative and enjoys having the opportunity to continue to connect with each of them.  

English-Language Learners

laptop showing video call with students.

Fatou Bah, our School Outreach Coordinator at Tyee High School, wants to highlight her ELL students (English-language learners), who are navigating learning from home while struggling with electronics and learning English. Fatou is truly impressed by her students drive to learn, adapt and succeed in a completely new system. Each time Fatou would attend their Zoom English classes, she watched as these students attended every day listening and learning, ready to take on this new challenge. This inspired Fatou to start a Saturday English class on Zoom where French speaking students can learn English as well as get homework help.

Virtual Lunch Group

Our School Outreach Coordinator, Robert Daniel at Lakota Middle School, hosted a virtual lunch group to try and get back some of the normal social fun that his Lakota students normally get to share when they are in school. Robert had a great time hosting this lunch group with his students and they all had some good fun together.

screenshot of video call with students.

During the lunch time talks the students discussed which song would be their theme song for quarantine. Robert has plans to make a playlist of all the songs the group came up with so that the students and he can have a fond memory of this time in their lives.

Collaborating Resources

Laptop showing slide show for LTI's During COVID.

Our Experiential Learning Coordinator, Markese Walker-Brown, at Truman Campus, has been focusing on collaborating with school staff and other Learning Through Interest Coordinators to strengthen the ability to better support his students. As internship / interest driven coordinators, they strive to ensure their students feel supported and connected to opportunities. “With this pandemic going on, we have been coming together, meeting behind scenes to collaborate on resources that have been working for us individually,” Markese said. 

Remote Learning Platforms

Tablet with Clever logo displayed on screen.

Kimberly Foster, our School Outreach Coordinator at TAF@Saghalie, has been supporting students via video calls walking them through access to remote learning platforms used by their school. Kimberly discussed everything from the basics of how to log in to platforms like Canvas, to how to submit work and collaborate with teachers to get the right assignments in to raise their grades. “Using technology to make the most of distance learning has still allowed me as a Communities In Schools Coordinator to work “with” the student to hear their struggles and find solutions together” said Kimberly. She has been having great success and response from students and parents connecting with them on Zoom calls to support them with navigating remote learning and raising grades.

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