Parent University at The Warren-Prescott School

December 10, 2010
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Parent University presenters Eileen McAdams, Ming Sun, Ale Hernandez and Maurita Castañeda

The Warren-Prescott School, in collaboration with the Family and Community Engagement Department of the Boston Public Schools, began its satellite Parent University program last Thursday.  Over 70 participants chose from six classes, each addressing a particular parental interest.

Organizing the program was the Warren-Prescott School’s FCOC coordinator, Margaret “Alle” Hernandez who worked with the school’s principal Dr. Domenic Amara and Michelle Brooks, the Assistant Superintendent for Family and Student Engagement to design a program which met the unique needs of the school and the community.

“From the start our goals were to bring a learning experience specifically designed to bring Warren-Prescott School parents together in a convenient setting to learn how to help their children, their family and their community,” said Hernandez. ”

Hernandez, who has been the school’s FCOC coordinator for five years, said that the phrase “…if you build it they will come”  really did apply in this case.  The number of attendees exceed her expectations and the reviews were outstanding.

The course offerings included: Easy Keys to Healthy Living presented by Eileen McAdams, NP, MGH Charlestown Health Center, Ming Sun, MPH,CHES, MGH Community Health Associates; Strategies to help Parents Work Together On Their Children’s Education presented by Haji Shearer; Keeping Your Family Safe/Creating an Emergency Plan for Your Family presented by Patricia Simpson, RN, tri-city Emergency Preparedness Coordinator; and Getting Ready for College, presented by Ellen Ronayne, TERI College Planning Center.

Hernandez said that even as a first step the Warren-Prescott’s satellite Parent University Program was an unqualified success. The school, central administration, parents and outside individuals and agencies came together in a very personal and powerful way. Parents walked away feeling they learned something and wanting more.

All the sessions were interactive and incorporated the principles of adult learning.

“We’re all obliged to Michelle Brooks for her vision for Parent University,” said Dr. Amara. “It’s