Interview David Hernandez, Parent Resource Centers

By Frédéric M. Martin, Editor-in-Chief

What is the mission of Parent Resource Centers? PRCs were put in place to build a bridge, for the community, to empower interested members and to create opportunities for families. The program is particularly useful for parents with children enrolled in the Madera Unified School District, to aid in their access to resources and information, to better understand the educational system and processes, and to deliver an engagement platform that can be tailored to their level of engagement opportunities with the school district through volunteering. Participants can leverage the workshops and parent engagement programs to build the capacity within themselves, through guided instruction within the system, and to share their findings with other parents. PRCs were launched, at MUSD, during the 2014-2015 school year. PRCs are a component of the Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) initiative. There are now eight PRCs in place and we are about to launch a ninth PRC at Madison Elementary, with goals specific to the DLI (Dual Language Instruction) program that is entering its second school year. Core services available from PRCs include working with elementary schools, developing the family map concept, with activities associated with their children’s grade, including the specific subjects for which their child require additional attention. The parents come home equipped with tools they can use to help their child raise their academic accomplishment to their target level or catch up if they lag behind their classmates. We are taking those programs to schools that have a specific focus. For example, there is a focus, at Lincoln Elementary, on students with disabilities. Parents are excited about the resources, delivered in English and in Spanish, to accommodate the bulk of the demand. We also have English as a Second Language (ESL) to enable parents who require that training, to be better equipped to help their children achieve their academic goals at the school. Out of the 8 current centers, 6 have ESL in place with morning and evening programs, from 8:00 to 11:30 AM and 5:00 to 8:30 PM. Madison is the next (ninth) PRC project, with ESL and English programs. We know parents are asking for resources, so they can actively participate and contribute to the supplemental education their children are receiving in the DLI Program. The PRC will also facilitate monthly parent-teacher meetings, work on developing family activities for further practicing and learning at home. Also instituting a Project 2-Inspire program, from the California Association of Bilingual Educators (, an organization that will send a contractor to our location; this project is set up to identify, facilitate, and orchestrate access to the various resources available to the parents at MUSD to further leverage MUSD beyond the classroom work. In May 2018, MUSD hosted its second youth leadership conference, at Desmond Middle School, for 8th through 10th grade students. Developing leadership, importance of academics, importance of community and acceptance, with workshops and community resources presented as available services to the attendees. The conference provides students opportunities to refine their natural leadership skills, strive for excellence, strengthen their capacity for achievement, and celebrate diversity throughout Madera Unified. The full day conference hosted 125 youth leaders with leadership activities, problem solving strategies with peers and community resources. Some of the students told us that the conference had changed their lives. The conference committee succeeded in securing Mr. Dwight Taylor Sr. a national, high-caliber, motivational speaker as the guest speaker. Local experts facilitated education workshops which helped to address issues that affect youths’ education, health and social development. Youth leaders enjoyed a full day of leadership activities problem solving strategies with peers and community resources. Typical PRC activities for parents include participating in a workshop or academic program, walk-in access to information on the services, or staff registering students at the beginning of the year. We have seen a significant investment in digital literacy for parents who need help improving their proficiency using technologies that surround them. Not everyone has a computer at home, but most parents, have a smartphone. Some may not have been properly trained to leverage the many features available to them from those complex devices, which are increasing leveraged for communication between schools and parents. We are also looking at implementing a system that automates student local public library registrations with their school registration. Some technical glitches still need to be worked out, but we will eventually link the two registration systems.   [pl_section section=”text” id=”1678319431″] [pl_section section=”elements” id=”2002944956″]

Recent News / Novedades