by Karel Kilimnik
The District Partnerships and Community Engagement Community held its second meeting on Thursday March 21 at the Lucien Blackwell Recreation Center in West Philadelphia. All Board members were present, as were four members of the newly-created Board of Education Parent & Community Advisory Council. City Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell welcomed everyone and said how glad she was to have local control of the District reinstated. Co-chairs Julia Danzy and Mallory Fix Lopez took turns introducing the program.
Chief of Student Support Services Karyn Lynch provided an overview of the Family And Community Engagement Office (FACE) describing their role in providing professional development for parents and staff, help for family members with various concerns they have, assisting teen parents in getting an education, and helping the Bi-Lingual Counseling Assistants (BCAs) translate and interpret in a range of languages. Approximately 60 people attended. Instead of having District staff make presentations, the format consisted of small groups discussing the three questions and issues below. Board members facilitated the discussion at each table “to gather feedback and develop strategies for improving engagement”.