SUYI Family Engagement
Our family engagement work aims to amplify and incorporate family voice at Bailey Gatzert Elementary, Washington Middle School and in the Yesler community. At the same time, we aim to support the school’s capacity to listen and respond to family feedback and needs. Some examples include:
- All classes and workshops are hosted at the school or in the community and are guided by the goals of families
- Regular conversations and feedback opportunities with families, teachers, community partners, and school staff inform all family engagement programming
- Programming is designed with the goal of including families who are more comfortable in other languages
Seattle U students play a large role in our family engagement work.
- Undergrad service learners supported Family Talk & Tech Time by working directly with families to gain English and computer skills
- SU student employees support every aspect of family engagement programming including child activities, youth group facilitation, language interpretation, program coordination, and administrative support
129 out of 284 Bailey Gatzert students speak more than English at home, which means that all of our work must be multi-lingual. This fall, we partnered with the Seattle Housing Authority, SU student employees, and SU faculty to identify best practices for incorporating different language access strategies.
- Graduate student service learners from the Masters in School Counseling were invited to evaluate our programming through a “language access” lens. They were tasked with providing feedback and research after visiting FE programming and identifying an area to evaluate. We asked them to highlight what we are doing well, and what we can improve, and include research to back up their suggestions
- Venegas-Weber, faculty in the School of Education, has been key to the way family engagement works with multi-lingual families. We plan to continue incorporating her research and guidance into our work
- Fall quarter, we incorporated more in-person interpretation and written translation by tapping into the skills of SU students and community members to act as “language liaisons” at programming such as Evening Family Conversations